My village is situated in Tehshil Baijnath in District Kangra in Himachal Pradesh (India). Its name is Kanarag. It is 8 km from Baijnath. Baijnath is a small town, situated on Pathankot-Manali national highway. It is famous for its ancient lord Shiva temple. About my village, though it is not associated with any historical event; however it is unique in many ways. It is important for me because my lots of memories are associated with my village.
This is a small village with 30-35 houses, which includes the 10 houses of Katoch’s (Rajputs) and 10 houses of Gaddis and 15 houses from the lower castes. Though it is small village, but it is unique in its structure. Here everybody is dependable on each other. Most of the lands are owned by the Katoch’s, approximately about 70%. It is difficult for them to manage all the lands. Therefore they take the help of people from lower caste.
This is the main resource of earning for the people of lower caste. Gaddis are wondering caste of Himachal Pradesh. They mainly own goats and cattle. In summer, they go up hills with their cattle. In summer as snow melts and new grass is available in abundance on these hills then they reach there to utilize this opportunity. They live there on hills for up to six months and come back before winter starts. With them they also take cattle of other villagers.
In this unique way all castes are totally dependable on each other. Nobody can survive without the help of others. Gaddis exchange their cattle and goats for food with the Katochs and others. Gaddis even provide lot of medicines and rare vegetable which grow only up hills. These medicines sometimes cost around $200 to $500 dollar per kg, however, because of unawareness and non ability of buyers, they sell them for very less cost or sometime for free.
Second unique thing about my village is its water system. This area is prone for water shortage. But the elders of village have very wisely constructed a small canal from a place 3 km away from village to the village. This canal was made by villagers with great contribution by my late grandfather Sh Uttam Chand Katoch. This canal includes six small bridges made to avoid the contamination of water.
Due to this canal our village has not seen any water shortage in past. Third is the calm environment of my village. This calmness is like a meditation. One can hear the voice of following river water from two km away. People talks from kilometres away can be easily heard here. In cities, we will never get this opportunity. In every part of village, one can hear nature talking to him and enjoy lots of miracles of nature. I invite people to explore the beauty of my village and Himachal Pradesh. You will really remember this for your life.
1) My Village home
2) Water system of my village