Rhenock PO, Sikkim on way to be declared a heritage site

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Pradeep Mizar

Rhenock, July 11:

Rhenock Post Office was perhaps the first one to be established in
Sikkim before 1927. The first post master posted to the Rhenock Post
office is learnt to be Dhojbir Rai father of Dr. Shiva Kumar Rai, a renowned Nepali writer.

This post office was important from the point of view of the Jelepla
pass and trade with Tibet which commenced in full swing after the Young
Husband expedition of 1903 – 04 kicked off and hence this post office
holds a real historical value.

Today, in view of the Government of Sikkim’s the thrust is on promoting rural tourism, the rich history of the post office can be monetized by the local people for the purposes of Tourism. If the post office can be spruced up and proper premises made or upgraded then it can be declared as a Heritage Post Office along with the Rangpo Post office too and the route can then be sold as a destination and these post offices can be made into major
tourist attraction point.

Nearby Aritar is an upcoming destination and this will add to the color and flavor of the area for the visiting tourist. The first police outpost in Sikkim was also established at Aritar is learnt from the locals residing in the periphery of Aritar, Rhenock.

In Rhenock people can also check out the oldest nursery and find all historical artifacts said Member of Parliament P.D Rai. Mr. Rai further said that the English Royalty visited that nursery many years ago which will be another tourism attraction destination added to the post office and Aritar.

The view of the Standing Committee of Parliament on Information and
Technology, which visited Sikkim recently, is positive since there is no major giveaway and hence can be done easily. It is also seen as very important step in the context of Sikkim being a strategic border state. The visited committee has also seen the great potential of tourism value after seeing the same during their visit.

Briefing about the history of the post office Sub Post Master Ashok Rai informed that the post office, Rhenock is very old and traders used to rest here during those days when mule was used as vehicles to trade. Many traders had come from Lhasa and halted here, the people still know the places where mule trekked. During that time the post office was used by traders for sending their letters.

The people of Rhenock are very happy to hear that the post office of Rhenock is being turned into heritage stated, Mr. Rai. A local Dal Bahadur Pradhan, 85 years old informed that they want to see the post office being declared a heritage. The post office will need renovation as it got burned twice that in 1950 and 1957.

The Rhenock Bazaar has another attraction that is Chadrika Nursery and
in those days flowers used to be parceled from the post office to India and out side. During that time people also used to use the post office for sending money orders along with letters where as there was only one telegram system available in the post office and the same was used by number of people too.

It was further informed that during that era the post master used to hike all the way to Pedong, West Bengal on foot to dispatch the parcels. Likewise, Mandal Tshegu Tshering Bhutia informed that Shiv Kumar Rai had written a story titled “Tibet ko Hulak Path” and the story is related to the said post office located at Rhenock.

Novel writer R.K Pradhan said that during the period post offices used to keep the money in Police station during night time and used to bring back in the morning considering the lack of security.

Adding more Mr. Pradhan stated that during that time they had to pay
one anna for one parcel. Whereas Ganesh Pradhan informed that the people of Rhenock will be very happy and grateful if the Central Government declares Rhenock post office as a heritage site.

(Courtesy: Sikkim Mail)



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