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New road to shorten Hemkund Sahib trek

The pilgrimage to Hemkund Sahib in the Chamoli district of Uttarakhand will no more include an arduous 16-km trekking stretch as the authorities are all set to construct a road till Bhyundur considerably reducing this distance.

Under the present arrangements, pilgrims who come to Govindghat, the gateway to Hemkund Sahib, take their vehicles up to Pulna, which is at a distance of 3 km from Govindghat towards Hemkund. From Pulna they undertake 16-km trek to Hemkund, which includes 6 km of steep climb from Ghangaria till the shrine. This trek distance proves cumbersome for a number of pilgrims, who make night halt at Ghangaria on their way to the shrine. The distance between Govindghat and Bhyundur is 10 km, which after the construction of the road can be covered travelling in vehicles.

With the government already issuing notification, the construction of this stretch of road is expected to be completed in 18 months. Welcoming the development, Hemkund Sahib Management Trust vice-president Narinderjit Singh Bindra said the construction of the road would make Hemkund Sahib yatra more comfortable. He, however, said the speedy construction of a ropeway from Ghangaria till Hemkund Sahib was needed as even after the construction of the road, a steep climb of 6 km will still have to be covered on foot.

“A ropeway from Ghangaria till Hemkund Sahib will help pilgrims overcome 6 km of steep climb and increase the number of pilgrims to Hemkund,” Bindra added.

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