Despite tough terrain, pilgrims throng Churdhar temple : The Tribune India

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Despite tough terrain, pilgrims throng Churdhar temple

The shrine situated at 11,965 ft is the highest peak in the Outer Himalayas

Despite tough terrain, pilgrims throng Churdhar temple

Over one lakh pilgrims have undertaken the arduous trek to seek blessings from Shirgul Devta this year.



Pankaj Sharma

Nahan, June 8

Churdhar temple, the revered shrine situated at 11,965 feet on the Shivalik mountain range, the highest peak in the Outer Himalayas, has witnessed an unprecedented influx of devotees this May. Over one lakh pilgrims have undertaken the arduous trek to seek blessings of Shirgul Devta, transforming the serene landscape into a bustling hub of religious fervour.

Weekends have seen an overwhelming surge, pushing occupancy rates of all hotels and homestays along the trekking routes to 100 per cent. On weekdays, bookings remain high, with 70 to 80 per cent of accommodations filled. The weekend rush forces many visitors to spend nights in vehicles and tents.

Devotees from various states, including New Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Chandigarh, Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand and even abroad, are drawn to Churdhar. This influx has prompted the Sharda Monestry, Ashram Temple Committee and Seva Samiti to ramp up their services for the pilgrims. With rising temperatures driving more people to seek respite in the mountains, the Ashram Temple Committee and Seva Samiti have bolstered their offerings of food, prasad and accommodations to the visitors.

“There’s been a significant increase in devotees,” said Mahant Swami Kamala Nand Maharaj of the Ashram. “Weekends and holidays see the highest influx of visitors. We are providing free food, prasad and night stays as per the Ashram’s capacity.”

Babu Ram Sharma, manager of the Chureshwar Seva Samiti, said, “We offer free langar to devotees and blankets at a nominal fee. Due to the large numbers, we are using big halls to accommodate everyone.”

The homestays and hotels in Sarain, Nohradhar, Tarahan, Chopal, Haripurdhar and other entry points to the trekking routes are overwhelmed. Despite these efforts, the facilities sometimes fall short due to the high volume of visitors.

“The climate here is perfect. It’s neither too hot nor too cold, the mornings and evenings are refreshingly cool,” said one visitor.

As the summer heat intensifies, Churdhar temple continues to draw pilgrims and tourists alike, reinforcing its status as a centre of faith and tranquility amidst the rugged beauty of the Himalayas.

#Nahan


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