In Hampi, monumental bad service by false guides
Pearls, gold, diamonds, silver and other precious metals were sold in pounds on the streets, especially at Krishna Bazaar, Hampi, during the rule of Emperor Krishnadevaraya.
Foreign traders from as far away as France, England and others sold their wares at this bazaar. The capital of the ancient kingdom of Vijayanagara was the epitome of luxury.
The idols of Lord Rama and Lakshmana at Kodandarama temple on the banks of the Tungabhadra river near Chakratirtha are made of sacred ‘saligrama’ stones and the temple of Lord Virupaksha was built by Emperor Krishnadevaraya, the greatest king of Vijayanagara .
These are some of the “exaggerated” facts you can hear about the World Heritage Site.
This is because you may have hired an “unlicensed” guide, who has little knowledge about the rich history of the important mythological and historical place of Hampi.
Historical records say that Krishna Bazaar was a vegetable and spice market. The shops on the wide road in front of the Virupakasha temple were the only place traders sold precious metals and stones.
The idols of Kodandarama temple are just a shining black stone and the Virupaksha temple was built long before the reign of Krishnadevaraya.
Unlicensed guides in Hampi not only violate the rules set by the government, but also affect the livelihoods of guides recognized by the tourism department, putting visitors at risk and leaving them with an inaccurate history of the monuments.
Officially, there are 156 guides who have been trained and licensed after conducting background checks by relevant officials in Hampi, which receives the second highest number of tourists in the state after Mysuru.
Unlicensed guides are those who have not completed a three-month course provided by the tourism department.
They do not have a minimum qualification to apply for a license and their backgrounds have not been checked by the police department.
The Karnataka Tourism Business (Facilitation and Regulation) Act 2015 makes it a punishable offense to operate tourism business without registration.
According to an association of licensed tourist guides, there are at least 30 unlicensed guides operating in the “City of Ruins”.
Officials from the tourism and police departments acknowledge the presence of unauthorized guides. However, they say they are unable to act against them because they have no evidence.
Authorized guides Gopal and Eeranna said visitors are the biggest losers as they return with the knowledge of a bad Hampi story.
“In the three-month course, we get to know each monument and the history of Hampi,” they said.
“We made several approaches to the tourism department and also gave them the names and telephone numbers of unauthorized guides. Our requests to contain them fell on deaf ears,” Gopal said. Gangavathi-based historian Sharanabasappa Kolkar said unauthorized guides in Hampi were a worrying factor.
“Vloggers and out-of-town visitors often hire these unauthorized guides because they charge less. To make things exciting, these guides mix myth and history and give visitors misleading information. proof,” he said. This needs to be regulated, he added.
Hampi Deputy Director of Tourism Dr S Thippeswamy said DH“We can take action against unauthorized guides if we get evidence. We have warned a few who engage in such activities. The district administration has decided to train and license eligible people.