Himalaya is a combination of two words – Him and Alaya. Him means snow and alaya means house therefore Himalaya means House of Snow. These mighty mountains are highest in the world. Mount Everest, Annapurna, K2, and many others are among the highest mountain ranges of the world which are situated in Himalayas. These mountains extend across the northeastern part of India covering Pakistan, India, China, Nepal, Bhutan and Afghanistan. As a matter of fact, Himalayas have kept India and China apart.
Himalayas are of great significance for Indian subcontinent. Mentioned below are the few facts about the same:
- Serves as a Defense barrier – Himalayas separate India from rest of the world. That is why they are important for India. They have been serving as a shield and an obstruction for the foreign invaders. The height of the mountains plays a very important role in saving the borders of Indian Subcontinent. This is the reason that people address Himalayas as “The Sentry of India”.
- Flora and Fauna – Himalayas are a house to exotic and rich flora and fauna. Many species of plants and animals are found in these mountains which are not available in any other part of the world. The plants that grow here are of medicinal value and are really sought after. The endangered species of Tigers, golden langurs, elephants, musk deer, snow leopard and a number of bird species is found here.
- Tourism – Himalayas offer great tourist spots for people from all over the world especially during summer and spring season. People go to mountains destinations and get relief from the scorching heat of summers. Tourists love to explore the rocky rides of Leh and Ladakh. Apart from that Himalayas are a great spot for pilgrimage. Kailash Mansarovar, Amarnathgufa, Vaishno Devi Temple and char dham of Hinduism are all located in Himalayas.
- Rivers and soil –Himalayan range is known for the rivers that are made due to the melting of snow and glaciers. These rivers and tributaries are considered sacred and are worshipped such as River Ganga and Yamuna. These rivers and availability of rich and dense forests make the soil very fertile and therefore more and more crops could be grown each year.
- Hydroelectricity – The water of the rivers and tributaries flowing from Himalaya are being utilized for power generation and irrigation. The economy and agriculture of various Indian states depend on Himalayas. Bhakra Nangal Dam, Rihand Dam and Kosi Dam are few such examples.
Himalayas are revered in India since times immemorial and will continue to do so in the times to come. These mountain ranges are nothing less than an asset for our country.