Speckless Ross and Smith Islands: Tourists laud Forest Deptt work

Report by: 
21 May 2017

Two secluded islands in the northern most part of this archipelago connected to each other by a thin strip of sandbar stands as a silent reminder of ‘Beauty in Contentedness ’. Serene and beautiful landscapes around the Twin Islands at Diglipur in North Andaman, crystal clear waters have earned recognition as one of the best tourist destinations for Ross and Smith Island. But it’s the workforce of the Department of Environment and Forest, which toils round the clock to ensure the naturalness of the island pair.
According to reports, more than 500 tourists visit the Ross and Smith Island during off-seasons while the numbers double during peak season. Under the supervision of the head of Diglipur Forest  Division, the Forest team led by Ranger work doggedly to ensure cleanliness at the tourist spot. Availability of eco-friendly huts, basic amenities, proper watch and ward etc has lead to notable increase in tourist footfalls at Ross and Smith Islands in the past couple of years. “Our dedicated team of workers leaves no stone unturned towards preservation of the natural beauty of Ross and Smith Island. Based on tourist footfalls, the Forest Department has provided adequate numbers of eco-friendly huts, changing rooms and other basic amenities at the site where visitors spend more than 4 hours on picnicking. Beach cleaning drives are conducted at regular intervals to keep the area spick and span. There are also plans to provide more facilities for tourists, whose numbers have amplified significantly in the past few years,” said an employee of Diglipur Forest Division requesting anonymity.
“From the 25 minute boat ride from Aerial Bay to spending time on the Ross and Smith Island, everything has an exclusive feel to it. The island pair offers  a new world away from the humdrum of city life. Clear blue waters, spotless sandy beach add a whole new experience to visitors and the purity and view which the twin islands offer is breathtaking. Hundreds of visitors to Ross and Smith Island remain awestruck after landing at the beach and major share of credit goes to the Forest Department here. One cannot notice a bit of trash littered on the beach here. Sufficient number of eco-friendly huts and other basic amenities have been ensured at the tourist site. Besides, the forest workers also provide all other necessary assistance to the visitors of the twin islands,” said some tourists speaking to EOI.