Uttarakhand: State Government Inks Agreement With Private Firm For Developing 3.4 Km Yamunotri Ropeway


The ropeway project at Yamunotri, one of the Char Dhams in the great Himalayas, is inching closer to reality.

This comes in the backdrop of the Uttarakhand government signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on 23 February for development and operation of passenger ropeway.

The concession agreement for Yamunotri ropeway was signed between the Uttarakhand Tourism Development Board (UTDB) and private firms, namely, S R M Engineering and FIL Industries Limited

Speaking after the signing of the MoU, Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami said, “Yamunotri Dham is crucial for our state and is recognized worldwide. It is an auspicious day for us today. With the ropeway, the journey (yatra) of the pilgrim will become easier and also reduce their travel time,” Dhami said.

The signing of MoU comes close on the heels of the project receiving clearance from the Ministry of Environment after a long delay. The Ministry of Environment and Forest has now transferred 3.8 hectares of land to the tourism department for the project.


The ropeway from Kharsali village to Yamunotri Temple in Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand is being built under public-private partnership (PPP) mode.

Ropeway Location

The length of the ropeway, which comes at an altitude of 10,797 feet, will be 3.38 km (aerial distance) and will be developed at a cost of Rs 166.82 crore.

Around 1.78-hectare land has been identified for the lower terminal of the ropeway at Kharsali while for the upper terminal, 0.99 hectare land has been identified near Yamunotri Temple.

Based on Mono-Cable Detachable Gondola system technology, the ropeway will have a design capacity of minimum 500 PPHPD (person per hour per direction).

Necessity For Ropeway

Yamunotri is a part of Char Dham (along with Gangotri, Kedarnath and Badrinath), the four most revered Hindu pilgrimages in the Himalayas.

The small mountain hamlet, with the Yamunotri Temple at its centre, attracts thousands of devotees every year and is the commencing point of the Char Dham Yatra pilgrimage (May to October), which proceeds from Yamunotri to Gangotri and finally to Kedarnath and Badrinath.

Lodged in a narrow gorge, close to the source of the Yamuna, the Yamunotri Temple is dedicated to Yamuna, the second-most sacred river after the Ganges.

Devotees either walk or ride a palanquin or a pony to reach the temple (around 3,233 m above sea level) from Kharsali in Janki Chatti, a steep trek of about 3 km that takes about 3 hours.

The ropeway project will reduce the travel time to just 15-20 minutes apart from offering a scenic aerial view of the stunning landscape dotted with icy peaks, glaciers and hot springs.

The ropeway will not just reduce the distance to the Himalayan temple but also save pilgrims, especially the elderly, from undertaking the arduous trek to reach it.