24 September, 2020

Deluxe Moksha

Penance on a bed of nails is being replaced by comfort 'n leisure

Tribhuvan Tiwari
Deluxe Moksha
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

It’s an old family story. Years ago, when a grand-uncle decided to go on a pilgrimage to Gangotri-Yamunotri, he was given a tearful farewell by the entire community, as though he might never return home. The climb to the mouths of the two rivers was a treacherous trek; no proper roads, no  electricity, a few odd places to brave the harsh weather and stay the night, frugal, rationed meals and every likelihood of the trip turning out to be the very last journey of your life. 

Now, fast forward to the present. As the holy glaciers become accessible to the crowds after a long winter hibernation, there’s a totally different spin to a pilgrim’s progress. The hike is still arduous, but there are Char Dham (Gangotri-Yamunotri-Badrinath-Kedarnath) excursion packages to deliver your piece of salvation in comfort and leisure. Air-conditioned cars and jeeps to whiz you closer to your destination on the motorable parts of the route. Luxury camps with spacious, weather-proof tents, attached baths and hot and cold water, multi-cuisine...

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