History has it that when Tipu Sultan ruled Mysore in the 18th century, prisoners who were sentenced to death were pushed off a cliff in Nandi Hills. Over the years, the cliff came to be known as Tipu Drop.
Two centuries later, the location has turned into a suicide spot. District police officials say they have observed a rising number of suicides and deaths from the area.
Taking note of the suicides, the Chikkaballapura district administration has decided to ban entry of single persons into the area. "Police has observed a pattern and decided to ban entry. We are taking steps to ensure the safety of people and one guard has been permanently placed on top of the hill," Anirudh Sravan P, Chikkaballapura Deputy Commissioner told TNM.
The DC further added that the area around the viewpoint has not been fenced since it is a historical site. "There is no fencing in Tipu Drop since it is a historical site and it would ruin the aesthetics of it. So, the fencing has been done at some distance away," he added.
The guards in the area expressed relief at the decision to ban entry of single persons. In June this year, a woman killed herself after she jumped off the cliff. Over the years, several people have taken their lives from jumping off the cliff at Tipu Drop while few others have lost their lives after they accidentally fell off the cliff.
The decision, however, means that solo-trekkers will also not gain entry into the hill. They will be stopped at the fee counter set up en-route to the viewpoint, a decision that has faced resistance from solo trekkers. "I am a bike rider, and I sometimes prefer riding to the top of Nandi hills solo on Sunday mornings. The recent ban on letting people going alone is a shock to me. Even the reason it was put in place surprised me. I understand that the mental health awareness is a must and precautions are necessary but this is not the best solution they can solve this problem with," Vinutha T, a resident of Bengaluru and an avid solo traveller said.