Six persons return to city from Char Dham yatra
A six-member group of ‘Char Dham’ pilgrims from the city, including one from Vijayawada, who went along with them returned by the Samata Express on Saturday evening. Another member from Gujarat P. Ganapathi Kumar, who went along with them returned to Gujarat.
Their beleaguered faces indicated the ordeal they had gone through. They were relieved to see their near and dear ones, who came to receive them at the Railway Station.
The relatives grew impatient as the pilgrims recounted the tragedy to the steady stream of mediapersons, who went to meet them one after the other. “We are getting late, please excuse us,” said a relative who came to receive them.
“My son had died in an accident in Hyderabad in October last year and we went for the ‘pinda pradanam’.
We set out for Kedernath from Haridwar by a van. We saw water overflowing on the Sri Nagar bridge between Rishikesh and Kedarnath. We planned to return but the route was blocked by fallen boulders and we took an alternate route, which was 50 km longer,” said P. Ramavara Prasad, a retired employee of Hindustan Shipyard Limited (HSL) who lives at Allipuram in the city.
“Had we crossed the bridge we would have been in trouble. But, luckily we returned but we were held up for a day in our van surviving on the bread and biscuits, we had taken with us.
Later, we stayed a roadside hotel before returning to Haridwar.
The Army is doing good work and those at the Hemkund Sahib (Gurudwara) are also rendering yeomen service to the stranded pilgrims,” he said.
“It is like a second life for us. We had doubts whether we would return home at all. We were held up near the Sri Nagar bridge and the way was blocked.
Had we gone beyond the bridge, it would have been a nightmare for us,” said R.J. Mohan of Vijayawada.