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Thrill seekers’ isle at Hanuwantia

| Updated on February 21, 2020 Published on February 20, 2020

Why an annual water carnival in a remote part of Madhya Pradesh is on the bucket list of adventure enthusiasts and nature lovers

Hanuwantia is a rather unknown island in the middle of the Indira Sagar Dam, Asia’s second largest reservoir, and one among 90 other islands in the 96 sq. km. reservoir near Indore, Madhya Pradesh. Each of these islands is rich with biodiversity. But it is Hanuwantia that becomes the cynosure of all eyes, come January every year. For a whole month, sports and nature enthusiasts are spoilt for choice at Jal Mahotsav, a water carnival organised on this island by the state government to promote local tourism.

In its fourth year, held from January 3 to February 2, the event saw visitors arrive from all over the world to take their pick from calm sailing cruises to speed boating, a range of water sports, or even a tour of the nearby islands with their wealth of natural and wildlife attractions.

The choice of land- and water-based activities included hot-air ballooning, cycling, water para-sailing, paragliding, zorbing, island camping, stargazing and bird-watching. Visitors could also sample Madhya Pradesh’s local art, craft, folk music, dance and cuisines, besides the cultural shows held every evening during the month-long festival.

To ensure safety at an event of this scale, all activities were monitored through drone-controlled aerial videography.

Aside from all the fun and adrenaline rush, Jal Mahotsav also spread awareness on natural resource conservation besides promoting local artisans, local handicrafts and cultural diversity.

Rajeev Tyagi is a Delhi-based photojournalist

Published on February 20, 2020