Make a safe splash this monsoon
Sunday Mid Day visits four popular monsoon getaways � Kanheri Caves, Pandavkada, Kondeshwar and Oshane Koshane waterfalls � and brings back safety updates and emergency numbers to keep handy during your trip this monsoon
Kanheri Caves, Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP)
The gorging waterfalls of Kanheri Caves are an added beauty to the lush green cover of the SGNP. In the past, many untoward situations such as drowning and falling have occurred. Two deaths were reported in 2010. To prevent accidents during the monsoon this year, the SGNP authorities has put up banners indicating dangerous spots along the waterfall and increased the number of guards posted at sensitive spots.
“The number of guards has been doubled this year. They will stop visitors from going into the waterfall,” an SGNP official told Sunday Mid Day.
Call: 100 (local police station for any law and order situations), 101 (local fire station)
22621855 / 22621983 / 22625020 (SGNP control room, Thane SGNP), 28906606 / 28930145 (Borivali SGNP)
— Ranjeet Jadhav
Pandavkada Waterfall, Kharghar
The cascading Pandavkada waterfall in the Pandavkada Hills, Kharghar, offers a wonderful splash during the monsoons. However, there are chances of mudslides during the rains. Since 2005, these waterfalls have claimed 11 lives, according to the Kharghar police.
When SMD asked City and Industrial Development Corporation of Maharashtra Ltd (CIDCO) about the safety measures taken at the waterfall, it put the responsibility on the forest department. “We cannot control the crowd at the waterfall, neither can we ban tourists from the spot, as it comes under the forest department’s jurisdiction,” a CIDCO official said, on condition of anonymity. Calls to Range Forest Officer, Panvel went unanswered.
“As there is no safety measure at the waterfall, we advise visitors not to go to close to it. In spite of assigning patrol guards, it is difficult to keep a check on tourists, as there are multiple routes to the waterfall. Guards will be posted at the spot this rainy season,” a police official from Kharghar police station said.
Call: 100 / 27742500 (Kharghar police station), 27742500 (Navjeevan Hospital), 27423000 (Kalamboli fire station)
- Saurabh Katkurwar
Kondeshwar Waterfall, Kulgaon, Badlapur
Located in Kulgaon near Badlapur, this waterfall is around 70 km away from Mumbai. Famous for its majestic waterfall, this spot is equally infamous for the number of lives it has claimed in the last few years. According to the Kulgaon police, around 30 people have lost their lives in the last five years. Kulgaon police has beefed up security near the Kondeshwar waterfall, according to Dilip Pawar, assistant police inspector, Kulgaon station. “In order to check any untoward incidents this year, we will increase security at the waterfall. We will also put notice boards to alert visitors of the danger. Our security will be tightened on weekends.” The police have fenced the area around the temple near the waterfall and restricted visitors’ movement near the waterfall.
Call: 0251-2690050 (Kulgaon Police station), GIVE NUMBER (primary health centre in Kulgaon)
- Shrikant Khuperkar
Oshane Koshane Waterfall, Karjat
Located two km from Bhivpuri railway station, Karjat, the Oshane Koshane Waterfall attracts many nature lovers from Mumbai during the monsoon. Being 25 minutes away from the nearest village, this deserted location makes it a hotspot for illegal activities. The road is fraught with stones and slippery patches, which makes the waterfall inadvisable to visit in the rains. According to Karjat police, this year visitors will have to go through security checks before going toward the waterfall. “This is to ensure they do not carry alcohol,” a police official said, on condition of anonymity. Entry to the waterfall will be closed at 5.30 pm.
Call: 02148-223333 (Karjat police station), 02148-222069 (government hospital, Karjat), 02148-221108 (Sagam Ganesh Mandal ambulance)
— Shrikant Khuperkar