Subject and purpose of work: The study aims to assess the sustainability of rural areas of Western Himalayas during the year 2019.
Materials and methods: A questionnaire-based survey was conducted in upper Beas Valley of Himachal Pradesh. A total of 101 individuals were interviewed and the questionnaire was filled by the surveyor.
Results: Survey showed that high level of unemployment prevailed in the region with minimal monthly income. However, they engaged in agriculture and allied activities along with collection of non-timber forest products (NTFPs) to supplement their incomes. The proximity to protected areas led to frequent encounter with wildlife and such encounters increased after the commencement of Hydro Power Projects. Respondents believed that construction HPPs and expansion road network in the region has increased the occurrence of landslides; and many of them had lost their cultivated land due to landslides.
Conclusions: The study showed rural areas of upper Beas Valley were moderately unsustainable.