Badrinath- A Glimpse Of Heaven

By: Alok Singh ( Associate Editor-ICN Group ) 

NAINITAL: “Travel”, sometime you travel to explore the world around you and sometime you travel to rediscover yourself. One such travel where you discover yourself stays very close to your heart and remains in your memory forever.

It was one of my many visits to Garhwal in 2007, I went to Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun for some research on my documentary subject , this was the period when I was struggling for success, which was eventually away from me from past few months.

That was Saturday when I called up my friend Hemant in Rishikesh, who at that time was running a tours and travel firm, told me that he is going to Badrinath and invited me to join him , I told him I am not in the best of my financial position to afford but a friend is always a friend, said not to worry and asked me to reach Rishikesh next morning , I reached quite early there and we began our journey to Badrinath, as we gradually moved higher, the ever beautiful Garhwal hills started unfolding the virgin landscapes and lush green slopes of Shivalik. Hemant was  showing his polished driving skills, We drove along Alaknanda river passing through all the five Prayags, Devprayag, Rudraprayag, Karnaprayag, Nandprayag and last of them Vishnuprayag, soon, we crossed last major town Joshimath enroute Badrinath, the prayers are offered to Shri Badri Vishal for six months in winters as main shrine remain closed due to heavy snowfall between October-April.

It was about 6 pm when we reached Hanuman Chatti where the priest at check post put tilak and prayed for our safe journey, the entire drive after Hanuman Chatti was full with aroma of Basil all over, it was little over 7 pm when we enter the holy city of Shri Badri Vishal , Badrinath. With a comfortable night at GMVN tourist house, next morning we got up early to offer prayers and I was simply speechless when I saw the city in the day light , I kept my eyes wide open only to see the heaven on earth with soothing background music  coming from vigorous flow of Alaknanda.

Proudly standing tall the beautifully crafted holy temple of Shri Badri Vishal guarded by a huge mountain from back and on looking the Badrinath City creating a beautiful shot of any Hindi religious movie. Believe me there is no place where I had ever felt so devine and spiritual, I still remember, the sudden boost of rejuvenation in me with loads of positive energy.

A long queue to the main temple but worth waiting queue of gateway to heaven while still being alive, even the mighty Pandavas took the same passage to heaven so it’s like among “the league of extraordinary gentlemen.”

After offering prayer, we went out to check some of the local sites like Bheem Pul, Vyas Gufa, Ganesh Gufa, last habitat village ,”Mana”- famous for its woolen handicraft and local carpet and really warm and welcoming people ,their women look simply gorgeous in traditional black attire with jewelry made of teeth of musk deer. Mana is the only place where, the River Saraswati is visible and flows for very short distance then disappears underground.

I must confess that there was absolutely no need to look at mirror, because I knew it was me and only me with fresh lease of life and defining this place “A Glimpse of Heaven”.

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