Mangalore, September 13: Crew of eight persons, got stuck accidentally in the unusual rain struck -Jammu and Kashmir when they were on a pilgrimage to Vaishono Devi shrine, landed at their hometown safely on Thursday evening, September 11th.
Yermal Kishore Shetty, Harish Udyavar, Praveen Suvarna Manipal, Shivaprakash Shetty Manipal, Ganesh Malpe, Radhakrishna Shetty, Santosh Shetty, and Indrali Vasant Shetty, who had left on this pilgrimage on a package tour organized by a firm in the town, are quite happy on their safe return. The team was back by flight after touching down at Mumbai and Bangalore.
Four days before this team of friends was to begin its tour, the famous pilgrimage to the temple of goddess on Himalayan range had been cancelled. As the temple again opened for devotees, the team decided to go ahead with its pilgrimage plan. However, during the period these devotees were walking over the 23 km long mountain range to the temple, heavy rain struck the area owing to unexpected problems.
One among the team has revealed that, over two lac devotees were waiting in the queue to the temple. As the sea of people surged ahead, the team faced anxious moments after one of the members, Ganesh Malpe, was shoved much ahead by the bustling crowd. However, the team went through a sense of relief and contentment on reaching the temple and paying obeisance to the presiding deity.
It is gathered that, on their return journey, landslides had blocked their path. As such, military personnel arranged for the evacuation of stranded devotees through another route that passed through Bhairav Ghat, which is five km longer compared to the other route.
When the team was walking down, strong streams of water were hitting the ground from mountain peaks and huge rocks came rolling down. The team members said they felt their end was ascertain during this trip. By next day, the team members reached Katra by walking in amidst the heavy rain and chill climate without food or tea. They said that the government had cancelled the Vaishno Devi pilgrimage again following their return.
‘The road to Jammu from Katra was in very bad condition. Landslides and uprooted trees had blocked the road everywhere. Although with delay, due to the sloe efforts and hard works of military personnel, we could reach Jammu. We felt as if we got a rebirth once there,’ the friends said.
The crew revealed that, as they felt that the family members would turn anxious; they had decided not to unravel the hard-ships they were through during the cell phone conversations from their family. Wiping their tears, the pilgrims said only after reaching home; they narrated the difficulties they faced through to their kith and kin.