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tv   The Travel Show  BBC News  August 12, 2017 10:30am-11:01am BST

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bledington looks like the quintessential english village. we were keen to see what diversity we could find within bledington, just as an example of what you can find all over britain. we explored a few villages like bledington, nearby and around the country, and once we started talking to the people within the village and met with the parish council, they were so excited about the project that for us, it was the obvious choice. yet the results were anything but obvious. it turns out that as a whole, the residents in this most english of villages are less than 50% english. very interesting, because it tells you the percentage of britishness, how much of you is from europe or ireland. we are not completely british. the links stretch across the globe, from the cotswolds to the caucasus, the middle east back to middle england. some surprises there, and hopefully
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some surprises tonight, because sta rgazers some surprises tonight, because stargazers are hoping to get a good view of the perseid meteor shower. hundreds of meteors will streak gci’oss hundreds of meteors will streak across the sky in a display that may be visible around the world. it should peak at 11pm, clear skies permitting, and it can be seen in most parts the uk. if you see everybody lying down on the grass as you head home tonight, that will be the reason! let's look at the weather prospects. it won't be a bad weekend overall gci’oss it won't be a bad weekend overall across the british isles, that this not to say that there are not a couple of flies in the ointment. through the morning, we have had two weather fronts bringing cloud through the morning, we have had two weatherfronts bringing cloud and the chance of some rain to some parts of the british isles. through the afternoon, the front will drag out of scotland's and push into the eastern side of the pennines, the
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north—east are not faring too well. an improving situation in the cloud these —— in the south—east as the cloud passes through there. through the evening, the showers will move into the north sea. they will keep going across the north of scotland. it will turn out to be quite a cold night, which is good news if you are trying to spot the meteor showers. tomorrow will be a bright day for many. cloud oils into the south west later in the day, a high temperature of 23 celsius. hello. this is bbc news with. the headlines: president trump has issued a fresh warning to north korea, saying pyongyang will "regret it fast" if it targets any military action against the us island of guam, or against america's allies. the government is to look at new measures to tackle the dangerous use of laser pens, amid concerns about their threat to air safety.
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the devices can cause blindness if shone directly into people's eyes. an anti—islam candidate will stand in ukip‘s leadership election, despite previous attempts by party members to block her. anne marie waters campaigns against sharia law in the uk and some party members have said they may resign if she wins. two people including a young girl have reportedly been shot dead in kenya in opposition protests after the disputed election victory of president uhuru kenyatta. now on bbc news, it's time for the travel show. india. a vast country, home to over a billion people, birthplace of illustrious, ancient civilisations. .. and today, a fast emerging global power. and 70 years after independence, india is still a diverse,
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ever—evolving assortment of cultures, creeds, religions and languages. heading off the well—worn tourist path, we're on a journey that spans this vast subcontinent from east to west, travelling from one of the driest places on earth... it's quite incredible, the sand. i mean, it'sjust hard crystals, white salt. you can probably taste it. ..to one of the wettest. these are areas really for the adventurous traveller. this isn't india on tap. i'm on a quest to find out how history, religion and politics have shaped india. and i also meet the people who call this intriguing and sometimes overwhelming country home. it's going to be an amazing journey. for thousands of years,
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india found its riches and influence through international trade. and at the heart of this enterprise was the sea. and the state of gujarat, with 1,000 miles of coastline, served as a shipping gateway to africa, arabia and beyond. this is as far west as you can get in india, and it's the mingling of all the influences from overseas that have helped make gujarat what it is today. the region is known as kutch, and its beaches, like here in mandvi, are a popular domestic tourist attraction. but this ancient port town's economy is still anchored in a much older maritime tradition.
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this is genuinely incredible. i'm in heaven. a huge shipyard with boats and ships at various stages of construction, all made from wood. in an industry dominated by bulky and expensive container ships, these smaller, more agile vessels are still in huge demand. so here are, really close up to these incredible hulks. this one is in mid—construction. we can actually go inside. i'm going to see how they make these things. apparently, each of these dhows takes two and a half years to make. for many of the workers, shipbuilding is a family tradition. and this ancient craft is now
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attracting unexpected new admirers. the region of kutch was home to one of the world's earliest civilisations, and can be traced back to prehistoric times. its old royal capital is the city of bhuj. its glory days are kind of over. it was badly hit by the 2001 earthquake. there's a kind of melancholy about this area, because obviously, this was once the real, opulent centre of a rich empire, trading empire anyway, and the hub was here.
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but what is still flourishing is bhuj‘s aso—year—old market just a few minutes away, where the trading tradition continues. what do they sell here? they sell everything. fruit, vegetables, fabric, groceries. all cultural backgrounds can be seen in the marketplace. here, as you can see, all different communities and ethnic groups come here. but kutch‘s natural harmony was disrupted 70 years ago, when the british left. the country was divided on religious grounds, with muslims partitioned to the north in pakistan, and hindus to the south in india. we drove out of the city towards the border with pakistan, along the way encountering
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some kutch herdsmen. they've been living here for 400 or 500 years. since, they migrated down south into kutch from sindh, which is now part of pakistan. ever since the split, there's been tension between the two governments, but to these herdsmen, national borders and religious differences mean little. for the people of kutch, india and pakistan or hindu/muslim it's not that important. people are religious, of course, but they're living in harmony and the relationship between these two different groups is brotherly. when two countries were created from one, indelible scars were left on the psyche of the subcontinent. archive: independence has not yet brought them peace. rejoicing turned quickly into horror and mourning. in traumatic scenes,
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more than a million people died in religious rioting, and many millions more were displaced. this all used to be one, but now it's divided in two. and now the border itself has become a tourist attraction. that way is pakistan? that way is pakistan, about 70 kilometres up north. that is where the india—pakistan border is, which lies along the middle of kutch, which is a geographical valley. at nearly 500 metres above sea level, the highest point, kalo dungar hill, allows us a dramatic view of this geological phenomenon, the rann, or desert of kutch, which continues into pakistan. i wanted to get up closer to this natural wonder. it's quite incredible, the sand.
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i mean, it'sjust hard crystals, white salt. you can probably taste it. really unusual to see something like this. the further out i walked, the less lovely it became. it's actually quite incredible. it's more like snow or sludge than white sand or white crystals when it gets wet around here. i'm getting really deep into it. whoa! today, this shimmering wilderness is a healthy source of income for the region, thanks mainly to a three—month long festival throughout the winter. it is amazing. what was a vast, barren landscape has been transformed into this colourful complex, whereby at night, there's live music and other performances and by day, there's plenty of other activities. just here is what you might call the glamping quarters. 50,000 people have come here in the last couple of months alone.
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i guess this is a cross between a weekend festival and a holiday resort. it's basically a honeypot for the booming middle classes of india in what has been one of the fastest—growing economies in the world. the revival of interest in kutch culture, boosted by the festival, has been a lifeline for one group of locals in particular, folk musicians. music in particular is very rich over here. previously, they used to perform with their cattles, the shepherds. then afterwards, when they came home, they'd get together and their speech and songs are being performed. it's a day—to—day practice. one person plays two
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flutes of the same time? yes. now, for example, 500 cattles are there and only one shepherd is there. so he'll sit and start playing this and whatever musical reach this has, the cattles will not go out of that range. wow. and they enjoy the music, so the digestive system, the milk output increases. so this is the beauty of it. so it's almost like meditation. yeah. things are changing, definitely. as you say, tourism, so many music festivals are there, so they are invited in various parts of india and abroad. and of course, they are very well paid. and not only do i get a demonstration, but also
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the privilege of playing along... as lead tinkler. and yet again, i'm made aware that kutch culture is all about a sense of community and certainly not about religious segregation. from the bottom of my heart, i am telling you till today, in spiritual and music forms, hindus and muslims sit together and perform till today. for the next part of myjourney, i'm heading to the south—east of gujarat, to the town ofjunagadh. ah, the classic indian railway station. to me, nothing sums up
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this country better than the indian railway network. more than any political act, they say that this is what unifies this country. i remember as a small child being on an indian train and being totally overwhelmed by it, but i love it. ah, this feels imminent. who knows when this was made, this train? it looks pretty damn old to me. but wow, look at that. it's a network that ferries millions of passengers daily across tens of thousands of track to nearly 7,000 stations. it's one of the world's biggest employers. if there's one defining legacy of british rule,
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it's the vast, sprawling, creaking indian railway network. it's still the lifeblood of the country today. they sing i'll tell you this: you wouldn't get this on a suburban train on a cold wednesday morning in london, or any other western city. this is unique. do you know everyone on this carriage? yeah. yeah, from the train journey? yeah, trainjourney, train friends. you're the train friends, excellent. you have a community. is it lucky to have a seat on the train? yes. very lucky. she's very lucky. like you.
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like me! so here we are, the ancient, fortified city of junagadh, crowded and noisy, as i expected. let's go explore. just a few minutes from the station along a dusty, busy road, stands this jaw—dropping and little—known architectural wonder. built in the late 19th century, the mahabat maqbara is an elaborate mausoleum, blending indian, islamic, gothic and european architecture.
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the intricate carvings took over a decade to complete, and the whole structure reflects the opulence and influences of the time. back in the day, under the british raj, there were hundreds of so—called princely states run by maharajahs and nawabs, powerful and wealthy men. there was one such character here, a nawab who made a decision that still has ramifications for relations with india and pakistan even today. these nawabs led lavish lifestyles, in stark contrast to ordinary indians. the nawab ofjunagadh, mahabat khan iii, was no different. archive: this states celebrates the marriage of the eldest son
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of the nawab with all the pomp and splendour of a princely wedding. harish desai was ten in 1946, and recalls the splendour of the ceremony. archive: escorted by the royal guard, the bridegroom drives in state through the streets. before him and the procession goes a costly profusion of wedding gifts. all the princes were there, attired in a princely pattern with turbans of a particular type on their head. dance girls used to be brought there, musicians and all that. that lasted for several days. and he recalls getting his first taste of this other world. for the first time, i saw bread, butter, sandwich. that was not known to us here. my father said "you eat this. this is bread and this is butter". and i liked it. there were small pastries. i still remember that made in england, london,
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there were huntley & palmers biscuits. the important thing is the formal photograph of his highness, mahabat khan iii. the nawab‘s own most legendary indulgence was his love of animals. his main hobby was for dogs. he was mad after dogs. i think almost all varieties and breeds of dogs from all over the world were here. he used to arrange marriages for dogs, and celebrated with parties and honeymoon. honeymoon! he used to do it. but with the advent of independence, the power and influence of india's royal rulers was coming to an end. come partition, the muslim nawab wanted to make
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junagadh part of the newly created islamic pakistan... even though the town is more than 80% hindu and hundreds of kilometres from the border. infuriated, the new indian government rallied its troops. the news started coming that the army is coming with huge tanks and trucks and jeeps and artillery and guns and everything are there. junagadh state was besieged on three sides also. an economic blockade was ordered, cutting off supplies of food and resources into the region. eventually, junagadh acceded to india and the nawab fled to pakistan. yet to this day, 70 years on, his great—grandson still lays claim to junagadh. and the episode lingers as a reminder of the last days
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of the raj in india. and 65 kilometres down the road in the gir sanctuary, the nawab‘s legacy as an animal lover extraordinaire continues with the most regal of creatures. now, lions may have iconic status here. they're a royal symbol and they're in hindu mythology, but at the beginning of the last century, they were threatened with extinction. i'm going somewhere now which is the only natural abode of the asiatic lion. the nawab preserved vast tracts of this forest to provide lions with a stable habitat, and banned hunting. the asiatic lions are smaller and paler than their african relatives. and these are their modern—day
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protectors, india's first female forest rangers, the so—called lion queens of gir. now they're part of a team that performs more animal rescues than any other wildlife park in the world. on average, the unarmed rangers cover 25 kilometres a day and have to tackle venomous snakes, leopards and poachers as well as lions. if they did get agitated, how would you be able to tell from the animal? how would you know if you're safe or not, being this close to the animal? and it did get dangerous for her early on in her career here.
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applications from women for these posts have rocketed, and the rangers are role models and trailblazers in the region today. 0oh, look at that mouth. the good news is that from once being in danger of extinction, numbers have climbed to over 500. the next, much more welcome, problem is if the sanctuary is big enough for their growing population. so, the first part of my travels across india comes to a close. but next week, i head to the north—east of the country. i'm on the banks of the mighty river brahmaputra, and about to go to a very spiritual place. and with the amount of people crammed on here as well, it's going to be an experience. a region that prides itself
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on tradition and creativity, and a passionate desire to protect this unique part of the world forfuture generations. hello again. the weekend has gained mates start across the british isles. some decent spells of sunshine. that may not last in the north—east of england. in the south—east, we have seen a weather
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front thickening the cloud, with the odd spot of rain. and further north, another wet weather system with that band of cloud. that has brought a wet start to parts of central and south—east scotland. i am hopeful that kent and sussex will begin to brighten up at some point during proceedings. in the south—west, you are infora proceedings. in the south—west, you are in for a decent afternoon. further north, just in north —— just enoughin further north, just in north —— just enough in the way of cloud to bring some showers. vickers cloud will be closest to that weather front on the eastern side of the pennines, some showers there. for northern ireland and the greater part of scotland, there will be sunny intervals, dry weather and some passing showers across the north. further south, if you are heading towards the athletics in the east of london, i don't think the weather will get in the way here. there should be quite
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a decent afternoon and evening for proceedings there. the last of the showers move offshore into the north sea overnight. as the skies began to clear, the temperatures will fall away. quite a chilly night for parts of scotland, england and northern ireland. that is good news if you are keeping an eye on the perseid meteor showers. you have a great chance of seeing some of that activity. sunday starts on a cool note, but there will be plenty of sunshine. through the day, some cloud will develop and it will fill in eventually across parts of wales and the south—west. another weather front is working its way slowly but surely towards the british isles, and there is all the wind and rain from it during monday. it will turn out to be quite a wet day for these northern, central and western parts. the best of the weather will be in the east. this is bbc news. the headlines at 11am:
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a fresh warning for north korea from the us president — donald trump says it will ‘regret it fast‘ if it continues to threaten america or it's allies. they will be very safe. if anything happens to guam, there will be big, big trouble in north korea. a government crackdown on laser pens — new restrictions could be on the way stop pens being shone at planes and helicopters. ukip has approved anne marie waters, an anti—islam campaigner who describes the religion as evil, as a candidate for the party's leadership election, one of ii. at least two people have been shot dead in overnight protests following the disputed election in kenya. president the disputed election in kenya. uhuru kenyatta wa: re—elected president uhuru kenyatta was re—elected in kenya. and london prepares to say goodbye to two legends
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