Cherrapunji – Wettest Place on Earth?
Why is Cherrapunji (Mawsynram) the Wettest Place on Earth?
Cherrapunji is a town in the Indian state of Meghalaya. It is a name that instantly brings up the visuals of splendid waterfalls and rains!
With the scenic mountains that have green adorned on their surface, and the streams of water that fall like pearls, this place is regarded as the wettest place on Earth.
Though, this title was challenged by a place around 16 Kilometres west of Cherrapunji. This is the small town called Mawsynram!
According to the Guinness Book of World Records, Mawsynram received 26,000 millimetres (1,000 in) of rainfall in 1985, which is greater than what was recorded in Cherrapunjee.
But Cherrapunji still remains the wettest place since it records the highest rainfall recorded in a calender month! In July 1861, it received 366 inches of rainfall.
Why does it rains cats and dogs in Mawsynram?
- Mawsynram is located at a height of 1,500 metres above the sea level and experiences an average annual rainfall of 1140 cm.
- The geographical location of this place is the main reason behind the heavy precipitation in this region. Mawsynram is enclosed by hills on three sides and is more or less funnel shaped.
- The monsoon winds from the Bay of Bengal get trapped in these hills and when these winds try to get out of this valley, they result in heavy rainfall.
Mawsynram : A Visual Treat!
The district is renowned for its numerous historical and tourist spots. The serene valley of Mawsynram attracts plenty of nature loving tourists who are smitten by its bountiful fresh air, clear blue skies, lush greenery and rejuvenating waterfalls.
In Mawsynram, there is a cave called the Mawjymbuin Cave which is one of the most famous tourist attractions in Meghalaya. Stalagmites are elongated mineral formations that grow up from the floors of caves. These caves have many stalagmites and are of great interest for geological researchers. They are also known to have religious value. The largest stalagmite of the Mawjymbuin Cave is shaped like a massive Shivalinga and is worshipped by the locals. Every year, thousands of people come to visit this place to have a look at this wonderful masterpiece of nature.
The Mawsynram Irony!
Mawsynram is a small, rainy village town and is home to not more than 25,000 people. The inhabitants have become accustomed to living here and braving the extreme precipitation. The villagers are friendly and known to extend warm hospitality to their guests.
What is ironical is that the people in this region suffer from acute drinking water shortage, even though this place holds the record for being the most flooded place in the world. Of course, we city dwellers are to be blamed for this deplorable state of affairs! The over exploitation of natural resources and the lack of implementation of proper environmental conservation methods has resulted in this situation.
It is time to wake up!
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