It was for the very first time that I was traveling with my family which included our two-year-old daughter on a long trip. To be precise for 7 days we wished to cover Rajasthan as much as possible. Due to our work schedule along 10 – 15 days complete Rajasthan tour was an impossible feat which we cannot even think of so we decided to split our Rajasthan adventure into sections. The biggest chunk of holidays that we the people from Kolkata would normally get is during Durga Puja where the city comes to stand still and the whole city is in a party mood. The streets become choked and the best possible means of transportation would be to use your legs to travel from one place to another. So it’s quite common for people to actually go on a vacation during this period and the same applies to me.
Continue reading “Rajasthan in 7 Days”
It’s one of my passions as a blogger to visit old cemeteries and dig out history from each of the tomb and epitaphs. For me, each of these tells a story which needs to be told, forgotten with time I hope to bring back some of the interesting characters that once had a legacy which needs to be reminded. I had traveled to Gooty as a part of a tourist circle covering Belum Caves – Gandikota Gorge – Gandikota Fort – Gooty Fort. It was at Gooty that we have this famous hilltop fort which I have already blogged about and at the foot of the hill is this European Cemetery.
After the defeat of Tipu Sultan, the forces of East India Company looked to consolidate all the southern principalities and Gooty was one of them. The strategic position of Gooty fort at a hilltop resulted in a fierce battle and commanding that was Lieutenant-General Sir Thomas Bowser (1749-1833). Gooty Fort was captured by Lt. Col. Bowser’s detachment in August 1799, this battle resulted in some casualties and it was these dead soldiers and officers that were first buried at this European Cemetery.
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In this region of Andhra Pradesh, the popular tourist destinations are Belum Caves and Gandikota. Gandikota is more famous for its Grand Canyon-like gorge than the fort which people visit as a side show. Unless you are travelling to these two places as a weekend getaway in your car you would need to stay somewhere and this is exactly where our next tourist destination comes. The name of the place is Gooty or I think I should call it Gutty as this is what the locals refer to this place as.
My trip to Gooty was part of a tour to Belum Caves – Gandikota Gorge – Gandikota Fort. Gooty is a small town and the railway station is one of the diesel loco shed in the line between Chennai and Mumbai thus there is a sizeable population of railway employees who reside in quarters all along the railways station. The main Gooty town is however around 4 – 5 kilometres from the station.
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Few friends who were body builders decided to start a Kali Puja and on the grounds of Dey’s Medical factory. It was more like a suburban fair with a mini circus, magic shops, well of death motorcycle stunts etc. Then after few years of celebration the puja venue had to be moved since new industrial reforms were starting in the city and this ground was selected for the Dey’s Medical factory. Seeing this the organizers decided to shift the venue to somewhere else.
During this shift, however, the puja split into three different groups, one made their pandal just opposite to the old venue, another group shifted to Ballygunge Phari and a third group shifted to Christian Para (Para means locality in Bengali). As the name suggest Christian Para is a small locality where a handful of Christians lived and the main reason why it was called a Christian Para was that there was a small Church built by that small Christian community.
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After resting for a couple of hours I was finally back on my feet after the mammoth journey to Gurudongmar Lake. Suraj our driver had asked us to be ready by 1 PM for our journey from Lachen to Lachung so that we could reach Lachung before nightfall and that we could look around the village. We had light lunch and packed our luggage for our next leg of the journey.
Continue reading “Lachung – North Sikkim”