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INDIA DIGEST Volume 34 - August 2016





August 2016

Exemsa 2016

04 From the Ambassador’s desk cMNab;GarmμN_rbs;ÉkGKÁrdæTUt\NÐa 06 Painting Stories on textiles erOgrUbKMnUr BIvaynP½NÐ 09 Celestial abode of Shiva

brmsux lMenAzanrbs;RBHesv³

14 Outdoors in Uttarakhand TIFøaxageRkAkñúgextþ Uttarakhand 19 Head in the clouds k,alenAkñúgBBk 26 Travelogue Cambodia

kMNt;ehtuénkareFVIdMeNIrkñúgRbeTskm<úCa 34 News in pictures B½t’mankñúgrUbPaB 40 Mahabharata erOgmhaPart³

Embassy of India

Address: Villa No.5, St. 466, Phnom Penh, Cambodia Editor in chief: Mr. N.Sitlhou, First Secretary Creative & Editorial assistance: Mrs. Preeti Sajwan Editorial assistance in Khmer: Ms. Kunthea Editorial assistance in Khmer: Magic Group

Tel: (+855-23) 210 912 Fax: (+855-23) 213 640 Email: Website:

Cover Picture

International Day of Yoga. Embassy of India and represetatives from India, during Mass Yoga session at Angkor Wat, Siem Reap.


From the Ambassadorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s desk

Naveen Srivastava Ambassador of India to the Kingdom of Cambodia

Dear Friends, It is with great pleasure that I introduce this new edition of the India Digest to you. In the last few months, the Embassy with active support of the Royal Government of Cambodia has been able to organize several activities that were very well received by our Cambodian friends as well as others. As you know, the United Nations has declared 21st June to be celebrated every year as International Day of Yoga (IDY). This year to celebrate the 2nd International Day of Yoga, the Embassy joined hands with Ministry of Tourism and the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports to organize mass public Yoga events at Siem Reap (in the front lawns of the historic Angkor Wat Temple), Sihanoukville and in Phnom Penh. I was very happy to see a very good turnout at all the three venues and large number of people participating with the total number being close to 3600. We are grateful to both the Royal Government of Cambodia and to our friends for such an enthusiastic response. The photo on the cover page of this edition of the India Digest shows some of the participants in front of Angkor Wat. The increasing popularity of Yoga in Cambodia is a very encouraging sign. It also reflects a further strand in our deep rooted cultural relations with Cambodia. This was followed by 2nd India Cinema Week that we


organized with the support of Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts, Bophana Centre and Cambodia Film Commission. The Film Week showcased some of the more recent India movies from Bollywood. These films reflected on the one hand the aspirations of the youth of India and on the other hand, latest trends in Indian Cinema. I am happy to see many Cambodian friends, both young and old, enjoying these movies. The response to the Indian Cinema Week has greatly encouraged us and we do plan to organize more such festivals in the future. This edition of India Digest also introduces some aspects of Indian Textile traditions. India, Cambodia and indeed the Mekong region share strong cultural heritage in terms of our textile traditions. Some of you, may be aware that India, Cambodia and other centres of the Mekong Region have established Mekong Ganga Cooperation Asian Traditional Textiles Museum in Siem Reap under the Mekong-Ganga Cooperation (MGC) Initiative. This Museum is an excellent repository showcasing our shared cultural heritage. I would encourage you to get to know more about the Museum at ( and visit it while in Siem Reap. I hope this edition will encourage you to learn more about India. As always, we would be happy to have your feedback. You can write to us at ( or send comments through our Facebook at (IndiaInCambodia) and Twitter (@indembcam).

(Naveen Srivastava) Ambassador of India to the Kingdom of Cambodia

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Naveen Srivastava

GKÁraCTUt\NÐaRbcaM RBHraCaNacRkkm<úCa

kic©RbtibtþikaremKgÁ KgÁa (MGC). sarmnÞIrenH KWCaXøaMgEdl bgðajBIebtikP½NÐ vb,Fm’rbs;eyIg. ´sUmelIkTwkcitþelakGñk eGaysikSabEnßmBIsarmnÞIrenHtamry³ evbsay (www. b¤TsSnaedaypÞal;eBlGñkeTAextþ esomrab. ´sgÇwmesovePAelxenHnwgelIkTwkcitþGñkeGaydwgeRcInbEnßm eTotBIRbeTs\NÐa. k¾dUcCanic©kal eyIg´rIkraynwgkarTTYl eyabl;elakGñk. elakGñk Gacsresrmkkan;eyIg´tamry³ ( b¤sresrCaeyabl; tary³ Facebook eyIg´tamry³ (IndiaInCambodia) nigtary³ Twitter@indembcam.

Naveen Srivastava



Painting stories on textiles

Kalamkari, an exquisite pen craft that highlights the beauty of delicate patterns through the use of natural dyes, is now making its mark on contemporary products. Text ( Prerona Basu ) From adorning garments with detailed designs befitting royalty to reinventing itself into a modern day utility product, kalamkari has come a long way. An ancient Indian art which can be traced back to 3,000 years, kalamkari, which means â&#x20AC;&#x153;pen workmanshipâ&#x20AC;?, originated in the Golconda Sultanate of Hyderabad during Middle Ages. The kalam or pen is fashioned from a slender bamboo stick with a woollen rag wrapped and secured by cotton threads at one end. The other is sharpened into a nib for achieving detailed accuracy. The wool absorbs the dye and supplies it to the nib as the artist proficiently drags the tip on a cloth composed of natural fibre, thereby creating striking motifs. Kalamkari relies on organic dyes â&#x20AC;&#x201C; outlines of the drawings are made using molasses and iron fillings. The colours are prepared from natural products like mineral salts, fruits, flowers, roots and leaves. Once the painting is complete, buffalo and cow milk is An artist demonstrating a style of kalamkari blended with berries and alum to fasten colours as also to lend the cloth a glossy finish. The tradition of In- nas and Bhagvad Gita are hand-painted using pens dian fabric painting using natural dyes is one of antiq- to sketch and fill colours. Characteristic feature of this uity and the excavations carried out in Central Asia, form is the dominant depiction of round faced bigAfrica and Europe have led to the eyed gods and goddesses wearing discovery of such organically dyed elaborate jewellery and costumes. FACT FILE samples signifying the existence of Profusion of red, yellow, blue, green Srikalahasti style of kalamkari, a flourishing overseas trade. and black coloured dyes for paintnamed after the place of its Three styles of kalamkari have ing these pieces lend it a distincorigin in Andhra Pradesh, been documented in India. Masulitive identity. Even though it takes was hugely influenced by the patnam or Machilipatnam style 17 meticulous steps to create this abundance of temples in the hails from Krishna district of Andhra form, the craftsmen of Srikalahasti area it was conceived from. Pradesh and portrays strong Islamhave carried this tradition forward. With Hindu mythology being ic influence since it was patronised This form of hand-printing has been a primary inspiration for its by Golconda Sultanate. It adaptembellished with inventive designs themes, panels depicting vital ed itself with contemporary artistic and metamorphosed into bags, taepisodes from Ramayana, trends and is famous for using Perble cloths and greeting card. Mahabharata, puranas and sian motifs. Hand-carved blocks Karrupur style of kalamkari from Bhagavad Gita are handpainted are used to form the outlines of priMaharashtra was influenced by using pens to sketch mary motifs and a specially crafted Marathi sensibilities. This style is lavand fill colours. pen is used to add finer details. ish since the craftsmen embellish Srikalahasti style of kalamkari, their artistry by integrating gold bronamed after the place of its oricades in their paintings. Karrupur gin in Andhra Pradesh, was influenced by the abun- style was popular among the Maratha royalties and dance of temples in the area. With Hindu mythology the craft was used as pieces of couture in the form of being an inspiration for its themes, panels depicting saris and dhotis. To safeguard the interest of the artivital episodes from Ramayana, Mahabharata, Pura- sans related with the art form, the Union Commerce


There are three styles of kalamkari that have been documented in India

and Industry Minister Ms Nirmala Sitharaman has developed a guide map to provide impetus to the industry. The fact that in spite of all these adversities kalamkari has survived this historic journey spanning three millennia proves the resilience and perpetuity of Indian art and craftsmanship.

រឿងរូបគំនូរ ពីវាយនភ័ណ� Casøab)a:kad¾viessEdlrMelcnUvesaP½NPaBKMrUd¾ RbNittamry³fñaMRClk;BN’FmµCatirbs;va RtÚv)aneKykmk eRbInaeBlbc©úb,nñelIplitplsm½yTMenIb. GtßbT (Prerona Basu) Kalamkari

cab;BIsMelokbMBak;lm¥Edlmankarrcnalm¥itsmnwgBUCkSRt mkkarvivDÆxøÜnva eTACaplitpleRbIR)as;sm½yTMenIb Kalamkari )anEhlqøgCayUrNas;mkehIy. sil,³\NÐaburaN EdleyIgGacsÁal;taMgBI3000qñaMmun Kalamkari Edlman

n½yfa “eTBekaslüsøab)a:ka” manedImkMeNItenAkñúg Golconda Sultanate énrdæ Hyderabad kñúgyuKsm½ykNþal. Kalam b¤søab)a:kaRtÚv)anrcnaecj BIedImb¤sSIesþIgCamYynwgRkNat;ELnx©b;va nigruMedaysrés GMe)aHenAcugmçag. ehIymçageTotRtÚv)aneKsRmÜceFVICamux sRmab;eGayvaTTYl)annUvPaBRtwmRtÚv lm¥it. ELnRsÚbfñaMBN’ ehIybeBa©jvaeTAkan;cugsøab)a:ka kMLúgeBlGñksil,³ GUscug søab)a:kad¾b‘ínRbsb;elIRkNat;EdlmanFatusrésFmµCati EdlbegáIt )anCarUbEdlKYreGaycab;GarmµN_. Kalamkari BwgEp¥kelIfñaMBN’EbbsrIragÁ TRmg;énKMnUrRtÚv)anbegáIteday eRbIsárgU nigFatuEdk. BN’TaMgenaHRtÚv)aneKerobcMecjBIplitpl FmµCatidUcCaGMbilEr: EpøeQI páa b¤s nigsøwkeQI. enAeBlEdeK KUrKMnUrcb; eKlayTwkedaHeKanigTwk edaHRkbICamYyEb:rI nig GaluymIjuÚmedIm,IeGayBN’vaRcbl;Kña ehIyk¾dUcCaedIm,IeGay RkNat;vamanlkçN³relIbrelag. RbéBNIrbs;KMnUrRkNat; \NÐaeday eRbIfñaMBN’FmµCati KWCavtßúburaNmYy nigkarrkeXIj mYyEdl)anrkeXIjenA kñúgGasuIkNþal Ga®hVik nigGWr:ub EdCa GñknaMeGayrkeXIjnUvKMehIjénKMrUfñaM BN’srIragÁEdlbBaðajBI vtþmanénCMnYjEdlkMBugrIkceRmInl¥ÉnaysmuRT. rcnabfbIrbs; kalamkari RtÚv)aneKbBa©ÚlCaÉksarkñúgRb eTs\NÐa. rcnabf Masulipatnam b¤ Machilipatnam mkBItMbn;rbs; Krishna énrdæ Andhra 7

nigBNnaBI\T§iBlxøaMgkøarbs;GuIsøamcab;taMgBIva KaMRTedaysnþtivgS Golconda Sultanate. vaEbRbÜl xøÜnvaeTAtamsil,³TMenIb nigl,Il,ajedaykareRbIR)as;karrcna EbbQUgsmuRTEBkrbs;va. bøg;qøak;edayédRtÚv)aneKeRbIsRmab; begátI Ca TRmg;énm:dU bzm ehIyeKeRbIsaø b)a:kaBiesskñgú karKU lm¥ti . RbePTrcnabf Srikalahasti énkalamkariRtÚv)aneK dak;eQµaHeGayeQµaHTIkEnøg edImkMeNItrbs;vakñgú rdæ Andhra Pradesh Edl)anrg\T§Bi ledayR)asaTCaeRcIn elIslb;enA kñgú tMbn;. CamYynwgeTvkfaviTüahiNÚÐ eRbICakMlaMgCMrju sRmab; Gtßny½ rbs;va pÞagM cmøak;EdlbgðajBIvKÁsxM an;kgúñ erOgramekr’þ erOgmhaPatr³ erOg Puranas nigerOg Bhagvad Gita RtÚv)aneKKUedayédedayeRbIsaø b)a:kaKUvas ehIybMeBjBN’va. tYGgÁbgðajenAkñúgTRmg;enHbgðajBIRBHEdlmanmuxmUlEPñkFM ehIymanGMNac nigeTBFitaBak;eRKÓgGlgáarnigQutsemøóbMBak;. karlab BN’eRcInénBN’Rkhm elOg exov ébtg nigébtgsRmab; KMnrU )aneFVeI GayKMnrU enaHmanlkçN³EbøkEPñkBIeK. ebIeTaHbICava RtÚvcMNayeBl 17CMhanedIm,I begátI TRmg;enH vicRi tkrén Srikalahasti )anbnþRbéBNIenHrhUtsBVéf¶. TRmg;én KMnrU eday édenHRtÚv)aneKlm¥rCamYykarrcnaminEdlmanBImnu mk ehIybegátI vaCakabUb RkNat;tu nigkatCUnBr. rcnabf Karrupur rbs; kalamkari énmhasasa®sþRtÚv)anrg\T§Bi leday Marathi . Pradesh

rcnabfenHmantémøedaysarfasib,krlm¥redayPaBb‘ínRbsBV xagsil,³ rbs;eKedayrYmbBa©lÚ sURtBN’maseTAkñgú KMnrU rbs;eK. rcnabfKarrupurmanRbCaRbiyPaBx<sk; gúñ cMeNamraCvgSkSRt Maratha ehIyrcnabfenH RtÚv)aneKeRbI Cam:tU Tan;sm½y EbbRkNat;sarIngi RkNat;dTU .I edIm,IrkSaGtßRbeyaCn_rbs;sbi ,kr EdlBak;Bn½ n§ gw sil,³enH shPaBBaNiCk¢ mµ nigrdæm®nþ]I sSahkmµ elakRsI Nirmala Sitharaman )anbegátI bøgE; NrnaM edIm,Iplþ ;CakmøagM rujRcanmkkan;]sSahkmµenH.karBitmYyEdlfa eRkABIPaBGkusl kalamkari )anrs;randMeNIrRbvtþsi a®sþ ry³eBlbIshsSvtS_ EdlbBaðajBIPaB Fn;ngi nirnþrPaBénsil,³ nigPaBbuni Rbsb;\NÐa. Kalamkari,EdlCasil,³\NÐaenaHman GayuCag3000qñamM kehIy. manrcnabT kalamkaribIEdl eK)ancgRkgCagÉksarkñgú RbeTs\NÐa. ÉksarkarBitRbePT rcnabf Srikalahasti énkalamkariRtÚv)aneKdak;eQµaHeGay eQµaHTIkEnøg edImkMeNItrbs;vakñgú rdæ Andhra Pradesh Edl )anrg\T§Bi ledayR)asaTCaeRcIn elIslb;enAkñgú tMbn;. CamYynwg eTvkfaviTüahiNÚÐ eRbICakMlaMgCMrju sRmab; Gtßny½ rbs;vapÞagM cmøak; EdlbgðajBIvKÁsxM an;kgúñ erOgramekr’þ erOgmhaPatr³ erOg Puranas nigerOg Bhagvad Gita RtÚv)aneKKUedayédedayeRbIsaø b )a:kaKUvasehIybMeBjBN’va. sil,³krmñak;)anbgðajBIrcnabf rbs; kalamari

Kalamkari, an ancient Indian art, can be traced back to 3,000 years


( Below ) Kailasa Temple

CELESTIAL ABODE OF SHIVA constitute Ellora Caves. They were dug side by side in an area of 2 km in the wall of a high basalt cliff of the Sahyadari Hills. The temple-cave number 16-has traces of Pallava style and bears resemblance to DraThe state of Maharashtra is home to a large vidian architecture for its workmanship and number of monuments that showcase the sculptural ornamentation of rock-cut archicountry’s rich culture, heritage and legacy. tecture. The construction of the temple beThe Gateway of India in Mumbai, Chand Mi- gan in 757 CE and was completed in 783 CE. nar in Daulatabad, Aga Khan Palace and Kesari Wada in Pune are some of the many The temple design has surprised historians monuments that represent different eras and and architects due to the complexity inrepresent royal dynasties that have contrib- volved in creating such a magnificent comuted to the history of the coastal state. How- plex. Kailasa Temple’s architecture is notaever, a trip to Maharashtra is incomplete ble for its vertical excavation, dug from top without visiting Kailasa Temple, an architec- to bottom. Legend has it that carvers took ture marvel at the archaeological site of El- 20 years to remove about 200,000 tonnes of lora in Aurangabad. It is globally famous as rock to construct this monolithic structure. a megalith carved out of a single rock. The Most of the deities on the left side of the temHindu temple was built in the 8th century by ple’s entrance were Shaivaites while those Krishna I. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, it is about on the right are from Vaishnava community. 109ft wide and 164ft long. Kailasa Temple is A three-floor high columned arcade edges one of the 34 monasteries and temples that the temple courtyard. The two structures in Kailasa Temple, a centrepiece of world heritage site at Ellora, is a symbolic model of Mount Kailash in the Himalayas, text ( Renuka Suryavanshi )


Kailasa Temple, a centrepiece of world heritage site at Ellora, is a symbolic model of Mount Kailash in the Himalayas

the courtyard, as per traditional Shiva temples, have an image of sacred bull, Nandi, facing the Shivalinga. The Nandi mandapa and main Shiva temple are 7 m tall and built over two floors. Both are solid structures with elaborate illustrative carvings. The base level gives an effect as if elephants are holding the entire structure. One of the noteworthy structures in the temple is of demon king Ravana attempting to lift Mount Kailasa. The templeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s pillars, windows and gathering halls are carved with images of deities and other figures. Ellora Caves remained in oblivion for several centuries but the cave temples of Ellora were known to the civilised world through ages as an example of Indian religion and art. The Baroda Copper Plate grants of Karka 11 refer to the magnificent excavations at Elapura (ie Ellora). Arab traveller AI Masudi and historian Farishta were two early authorities of the Muslim period to record Ellora in their accounts. Ellora Caves, credited


by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, represent three different faiths-Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism-through these temples. They mark the culmination of the cave temple architecture in western India. While moving from south to north along the cliff, one first discovers 12 caves of the Buddhist group that comprise, they seem to be the oldest. Then come the caves of the Hindus, also known as the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Cavern of the Ten Avatarsâ&#x20AC;? and in the last stand, the structures of Jain group, said to be the last to be excavated and to take inspiration from existing art at the Ellora Caves. Kailasa Temple among the caves also stands out as the highest architectural attainment during the rule of Rashtrakuta dynasty. Thousands of sculptures, drawings and inscriptions in Ellora exude artistic richness and philosophy making the caves a major achievement of ancient Indian civilisation.

បរមសុខ លំេនៅឋានរបស់�ពះេសវៈ

R)asaT Kailasa EdlCatMbn;bitkP½NÐBiPBelakenAÉ Ellora KWCaKMrUnimitþsBaØaénPñM Kailash enAkñúgPñM him:al½y. GtßbT (Renuka Suryavanshi)

rdæ Maharashtra enHKWCapÞHmYyd¾FMsRmab; R)asaTcMnYneRcInEdlbgðajBIvb,Fm_ sm,ÚrEbbrbs;\NÐa ebtikPNÐ nigekrþ×MENl rbs;RbeTsenH. RckpøÚvén RbeTs\NÐaenAkñúgTIRkúg Mumbai, Chand Minar kñúg Daulatabad, RBHbrmraCvaMg nig Aga Khan nig Kesari Wada enATIRkúg Pune KWCaR)asaTmYycMnYnEdltMNag [sm½yepSgKña nigCatMNag[ raCvgSepSgKñaEdl)ancUlrYmkñúgRbvtþisaRsþ rbs;rdæÉeqñrsmuRTenH. eTaHbIy:agNak¾eday kareFVIdMeNIreTArdæ Maharashtra nwgmanlkçN³mineBjeljRbsinebIKµankarTsSnaR)asaT Kailasa nigsßabtükmµGs©arüenAÉrmNIydæanburaNvtßúénEllorakñúg Aurangabad.vaKWerOgTUTaMgBiPBelak. sm,tþimYyEdll,Ifa)an qøak;ecjBIfµEtmYyduM. R)asaThiNÐÚenHRtÚv)ansagsg; eLIgenAstvtSTI8eday Krishna eday]TÞis dl;RBHsiv³ vamanTTwg 109 hVIt nigbeNþay164hVIt. R)asaT Kailasa KWCaEpñkmYyénvtþGaramnigR)asaT cMnYn34 EdlbegáIt)anCarUgPñM Ellora R)asaTRtÚv)anCIkxagcMehog enAkñúgtMbn;én2KILÚEm:RtenAkñúgCBa¢aMgcMeNatPñM)ahSal;énPñM Sahyadari . R)asaT rUgPñMelx 16 mansøaksñaménrcnab½Tµbløv³ nigmanragRsedogKñaeTAsßabtükmµRTavid sRmab; TwkédnigeQIedIm,Ilm¥sßabtükmµrUbcmøak;fµ rbs;xøÜn. karsagsg;énR)asaTenH )ancab;epþImenAkñúg 757 CE ehIyRtÚv)anbBa©b;enAkñúg 783 CE. 11

karrcnaR)asaTenHGñkRbvtþsi aRsþ nigsßabRtkrEdlKYreGayPJak;ep¥lI edaysar EtPaBsµKú sµajEdlCab;Bak;Bn½ k§ gúñ karbegátI EbbsµKú sµaj Gs©arümYyenH. sßabtükmµR)asaT Kailasa mankaKYr[kt; smÁal;sRmab;karCIkbBaÄrrbs;va eday)anCIkBIkBM lU eTA)at. erOgeRBg)anBnül;faCagcmøak;)ancMNayeBl 20qñaM edIm,yk fµRbEhl 200000 etanecj edIm,Isagsg;TRmg;pÞaMgfµ. PaeRcIn énRBHGaTieTBenAelIRCúgxageqVgénRckcUlR)asaTB¤RtÚv)aneK mkBIshKmn_ Shaivaites xN³eBlEdlenAxagsþaMKW)anmk BIshKmn_ Vaishnava. sMNg;dMbUlRsÜcEdlmankMBs; bICan;CaTIFøaRBHvihar. rcnasm<½n§BIrenAkñúgTIFøaEdldUc RbéBNI R)asaTRBHsiv³ KWmanrUbstVeKaBisidæ Nandi EdlEbrmuTl;nwg Shivalinga enH. Nandi mandapa nigR)asaT RBHsiv³sMxan;mankm<s; 7Em:Rtnig )anksageLIgBIrCan;. TaMgBIr enHKWrcnasm<½n§rwgmaMCamYynwgcmøak;qøúHc,as;. kRmimUldæanenH)an pþl;\T§iBlhak;dUcCastVdMrIkMBugkan;rcnasm<½n§TaMgmUl. rcnasm<½n§KYr[kt;smÁal;enAkñúgRBHviharKWCakarb:unb:gesþc GarkS Ravana kñúgkarelIkPñM Kailasa. ssrR)asaT bg¥Üc nigsalkEnøgRbmUlpþúM RtÚv)anqøak;edayman rUbPaBénRBH Ganesha sculpture at Kailasa Temple

Religious figure carved into solid rock

GaTieTB nigrUbepSgeTot. rUgPñM Ellora sßitkñúg oblivion CagBIrbIstvtS b:uEnþrUgR)asaTrbs; Ellora RtÚveKdwgedaBiPBelak suIvil½y tamry³karmanGayukalEdlCa]TahrN_énsasna nigsil,H\NÐa. snøwks<an; Baroda én Karka 11 sMedAelI CIkkkayd¾Gs©arüenA Elapura (]TahrN_ Ellora). GñkeFVI dMeNIrGar:ab; AI Masudi nigGñkRbvtþisaRsþ Farishta KWCa GaCJaFrBIrGñkdMbUgénGMLúg eBlmUsøIm kñúgkarkt;Rta Ellra kñúgKNnIrbs;xøÜn. rUg Ellora bBa©ÚledayGgÁkar yUeNsáÚfa CatMbn;ebtikPNÐBiPBelaktMNag[CMenObIepSgKña KWRBBuT§sasna sasnahiNÐÚ nigsasnaeCntamry³R)asaTTaMgenH. BYkeK)an smÁal;cMNucx<s;bMputénsßabtükmµR)asaTrUgPñMenAPaKxaglic RbeTs\NÐa. xN³eBlEdlmankarbmøas;TIBIPaKxagt,ÚgeTA xageCIgenAtambeNþayRcaMgfµ eKrkeXIjrUgPñM12énRkúmRBHBuT§ sasnaEdlrYmman vtþGaramnananigR)asaTd¾FMEtmYy BYkeK hak;dUcCamanv½ycMNas;CageK.


North side of Kailasa temple, part of Ellora Caves

bnÞab;mkeyIgeXIjrUgPñMrbs;sasnahiNÐÚ EdleKsÁal;pgEdrfaCa }rUgénGvtarTaMgdb;} nigkñúgCMhrcugeRkayenH manrUbRkúmrbs; elak Jain EdleK)anniyay farUgcugeRkayEdRtÚv)anCIkkkaynig)anTTYlyk\T§iBlBIsil,³EdlmanRsab;enArUg Ellora. R)asaT Kailasa kñúgcMeNamrUgepSg² QrelcecjCasßabtükmµx<s;bMputkñúgGMLúgeBlRKb;RKgedayraCvgS Rashtrakuta. rUbcmøak; KMnUr nigsilacarwkrab;Ban;enA Ellora beBa©jCaPaBsm,ÚrEbk sil,³nigTsSnviC¢a EdleFVI[rUgTaMgenaH CasmiT§plsMxan; mYyénGriyFm_\NÐaburaN.


OUTDOORS IN UTTARAKHAND Himalayan ranges, sacred rivers, dense forests and geographical diversity make the northern state a dream destination for adventure sports-lovers text ( Anil Mulchandani ) The Himalayan ranges of Garhwal and Kumaon in Uttarakhand are blessed with flora, fauna, architecture, myths and legends. From the subtropical forests of the Terai in the south to high Himalayan peaks and glaciers in the north, Uttarakhand's hills are wonderful places for adventure activities, extreme sports and wildlife tours. Relatively easy to access from the big cities of northern India, a number of adventure tourism destinations have developed in Uttarakhand with tourists flocking to Auli for skiing in winter and Rishikesh for rafting in summer. During these months, many destinations open up possibilities for adventure activities like mountain biking, trekking, mountaineering, wildlife and elephant safaris, paragliding and river rafting. Take a look at some popular adventure destinations in Uttarakhand: Rafting in Rishikesh At the confluence of river Ganga and Chandrabhaga, Rishikesh is a holy place with spiritual activities around Triveni Ghat which is popular for ritual bathing and hosting the impressive Ganga aarti in the evening. Shivpuri, north of Rishikesh, is a scenic campsite by the Ganga which turns into a torrential river gushing over rocky boulders as it hurtles down from the upper terrains to the plains. Between September and May, some of the stretches of rapids near Shivpuri offer wonderful white water rafting opportunities, with different grades of difficulties. For beginners, the rafting session begins with a lesson by a demonstration on how to hold the paddle, how to anchor feet safely in the raft, the commands the guide shouts to warn approaching rapids or rocks and when to lean and paddle in rough water. For serious rafting enthusiasts, a two or three-day white water circuit with camp stays is operated by certified experts. The popular rafting circuit starts at Kaudiyala and takes in Shivpuri and Brahmapuri. Trekking in Garhwal From Shivpuri, the road runs north to Uttarkashi which houses the Nehru Institute of Mountaineering. A popular trek from Uttarkashi follows River Asi to the lake of Dod Tal set in pine and deodar forests, a perfect location for watching birds. To the north from Uttarkash is Dev Bhoomi,a major pilgrimage circuit comprising Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamunotri. The 26-km trek from Gangotri to Gaumukh, the glacial source of the Ganges, 14

landscapes and offers great views of the Nanda Devi peaks. The trail from Loharkhet crosses over the Dhakuri Pass and continues onto Khati village after which it is largely uninhabited virgin countryside. The trek usually takes six days before you reach the glacier that flows to the south for a short distance of about 3 km. A challenging trek of eight days is to the Milam Glacier, with Munsiyari as the base. Safaris in Corbett On the east of Garhwal is the Kumaon region, made famous by Jim Corbettâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s writings. It is Indiaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s oldest tiger reserve named after the British-Indian hunter and tracker-turned conservationist, author and naturalist. The Jim Corbett National Park covers a wide area from 400-1,200 m above sea level. The main tiger habitat is the forest dominated by sal trees and you can opt for an elephant or a jeep safari in the area. The best time to spot a tiger is between midApril and mid-June when the forest cover is less thick and the big cats frequent the water sources. The flat open grasslands called Beautiful trail in sunny spring day at the Himalayas

Black headed Jay at Pangot

crosses the glacier and includes the meadows of Tapovan and Nandanvan where the Bhagirathi and Shivling peaks loom. The Kauri Pass Trek, called Curzon Trail, begins at Auli or Ghat, and skirts the outer areas of the Nanda Devi Sanctuary and crosses over the 3,640 m high Kuari Pass. It is known for spectacular views of snowclad peaks of Nanda Devi mountains, the highest in Uttarakhand, the lakes, the waterfalls and the meadows on the trail. The trek to the Sikh shrine of Hemkund Sahib and the spectacular Valley of Flowers National Park begins at Ghangaria, north of Joshimath. Another botanical paradise, the Har-ki-Dun Valley Trek in the Govind Wildlife Sanctuary is a hike to the valley. Curzon Trail offers a spectacular view of the snowclad peaks of Nanda Devi mountains Trekking in Kumaon Like Garhwal, Kumaon offers treks from easily accessible trailheads. The Pindari Glacier Trek is one of the prettiest as it goes through largely unspoiled 15

chaurs form grazing lands for sambars, hog deer, spotted deer and barking deer. During summer, large herds of wild elephants congregate at these chaurs. River Ramganga and its tributaries offer immense opportunities to explore wildlife that comes out in the summer in search of water. Otters, crocodiles and waterfowl can be seen at the rivers and Ramganga Reservoir. Nature tours in and around Nainital to the east of Corbett, the hill station of Nainital and its nearby sites are ideal for nature walks in the mountainous forests. Pangot, around 15 km from Nainital, is a bird-watchers’ paradise with many mountain birds seen here and at nearby Kilbury. Sattal is another ideal spot for birding. Paragliding is possible at Naukuchiatal near Nainital. Fly Fishing Uttarakhand also attracts angling enthusiasts who arrive at the Himalayan rivers in search of the mahseer which is a sought-after game fish that fights fiercely when caught. Pancheshwar is a prime area of Uttarakhand for mahseer fishing in the Kali

and Saryu rivers. So, pack your bags now to discover enthralling beauty and mystic charm of the state.

TIFøaxageRkAkµµúgextþ ​UTTARAKHAND

GtßbT (elak Anil Mulchandani) CYrPñMhimal½yén Garhwal nig Kumaon kñúg Uttarakhand​ kñúgRtÚv)anRbTanBr edayman rukçCati stV sßabtükmµ eTvkfanigerOgeRBg. BIéRBRtÚBicén Terai enAPaK xagt,ÚgtMbn;PñMhimal½yx<s; nigpÞaMgTwkkkenAPaKxageCIgPñM Uttarakhand KWkEnøgEdlGs©arüsMrab;skmµPaBpSgeBg kILapSgeRBg nigdMeNIeTscrN_ emIlstVéRB. edayvamanPaB gayRsÜlkñúgkarcTA TIRkúgFMénPaKxageCIg RbeTs\NÐamaneK

Young tourists experience the thrill of white water rafting


begáItCaTisedAeTscrN_pSgeRBg enAkñúg Uttarakhand edaymanePJóveTscrsRmúkeTA Auli edIm,ICiHsÁIenAkñúgrdUvrga nigeTA Rishikesh sRmab;tamk,ÚnenAkñúgrdUvekþA. kñúgGMLúgeBlExTaMgenH eKaledACaeRcInebIkeLIg nUvlT§PaBsRmab;skmµPaBpSgeRBgdUcCakarCiHkg;eLIgPñM karedIr PñM stVéRBnig dMrI Safari elatqRteyag nigCiHk,ÚnTwkTenø. sUmTsSnaTisedAkMsanþeBjniym mYycMnYn Uttarakhand³ CiHk,Únkñúg Rishikesh enAÉcMNucRbsBVrbs;Tenø Ganga nig Chandrabhaga, Rishikesh KWCakEnøgvisidæ Edman skmµPaBsasnaenACuMvij Triveni Ghat EdlCakEnøgmanRbCaRbiy sRmab;eRsacTwkEbbsasna nigR)arB§BiFI Ganga aarti d¾KYreGays¶b;Es¶genAeBll¶ac. Shivpuri EdlenAxageCIgén Rishikesh KWCakEnøge)aHCMruMeTsPaBEk,r Ganga Edl)anERbeTACaTenøEdlhUrxøaMgFøak;elIpÞaMgfµnaeBlEdlvaFøak;y:agelOnmkkEnøgrabesµI. cenøaHExkBaØanigEx]sPa kalatsn§wg énTwkEk,r Shivpuri køayCa»kasCiHk,ÚnBBuHTwksGs©arü edaymanlMdab;elgmFüm. sRmab;Gñkcab;epþImdMbUg vKÁCiHk,Úncab; epþImemeronedaykarbgðajBIrebobkan;dgEcv, rebobkarBareCIgedaysuvtßiPaBenAkñúgk,Ún BakübBa¢amKÁúeTsn_ edIm,IRBmaneBldl; kEnøghUrelOn b¤CYbfµ nigeBlEdldak;dgEcvenAkñúgTwkxøaMg. sRmab;GñkcUlcitþ CiHk,ÚnxøaMg karCiHk,ÚnTwksBIrb¤bIéf¶ CamYykar sñak;enAedaye)aHCMruMRtÚv)anerobcMeLIgGñkCMnaj. karCiHk,ÚnEdleBjniymcab;epþImenA Kaudiyala ehIynignaMGñkeTA Shivpuri nig Brahmapuri . ePJóveTscrv½yekµgnwgmanbTBiesaFn_rMePIbBIkarCiHk,ÚnedIrkmSanþenAkñúg Garhwal cab;BI Shivpuri pøÚvrt;eTAPaKxageCIgeTAkan; Uttarkashi EdlmanviTüasßanenru. kareFVIdMeNIrEdlmanRbCaRbiyPaBBI Uttarkashi ecjBI Tenø Asi eTAbwg Dod Tal )ankMNt;enAkñúgéRBRsl;nigéRB deodar EdlCaTItaMgl¥\tex©aHsRmab;karemIlstVsøab. eTAkan;PaKxageCIgBI Uttarkashi KW Dev Bhoomi manmNÐlFmµyaRtaFMmYyEdlrYmman Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri nig Yamuntri. kareFVIdMeNIrcm¶ay 26KILÚEm:RtBI Gangotri eTA Gaumukh RbPBpÞaMg TwkkkTenø Ganges eTAkat;pÞaMgTwkkknigrYm bBa©ÚlTaMgvalesµAén Tapovan nig Nandavan EdlCakEnøgEdl Bhagirathi nigkMBUlPñM Shivling loom.


dMeNIefµIeCIg Kauri Pass Trek EdlehAfapøÚvlM Curzon Trail edaycab;epþImenA Auli b¤ Ghat nigecostMbn;xageRkA én Nanda Devi sMBt;tMbn;xageRkAénTIskáar³ Nanda Devi nigqøgkat;3640Em:Rt Kuari Pass. vaRtÚv)aneK sÁal;edayeTsPaBd¾Gs©arü énkarkMBUlPñMRKbedayRBil Nanda Devi EdlmankMBs;x<s;bMputkñúg Uttarakhand bwg TwkeRCaHnigvalesµAenAelIpøÚvenaH. kareFVIdMeNIreTAkan;TIskáar³bUCa Sikhén Hemkund Sahib nig RClgPñMpáa]TüanCati cab;epþImenA Ghangaria PaKxageCIgén Joshimath. sYn]TüanrukçCatizansYK’mYyeTot KWRClg Har-Ki-Dun kñúg EdnCRmkstVéRB Govind KWkareTARClgPñMenaH. pøÚvlM Curzon pþl;nUvTidæPaBd¾Gs©arüénkMBUlPñM Nanda Devi EdlRKbedayRBil edIrkmSanþenAkñúg Kumaon dUc Garhwal Kumaon pþl;nUvkaredIrkMsanþ )any:aggayRsÜlelIpøÚvedIr. pøÚvedIr Pidari Glacier KWCapøÚvmYyEdlmaneTsPaB Rss;s¥atbMput edaysareTsPaBenATIenaHminTan;maneKb:HBal; nig)anpþl;nUveTsPaBd¾ Rss;s¥atBI kMBUlPñM Nanda Devi. pøÚvBI Loharkhet enHkat;elI Dhakuri Pass ehIybnþeTAPUmi Khati EdlCaPUmi KµanmnusSsñak;enAkñúgCnbTenaH. kareFVIdMeNIrenHCaFmµtaRtÚvcMNayeBlR)aMmYyéf¶muneBlEdlGñk Qandl;pÞaMgTwkkkEdlhUr eTAPaKxagt,Úgcm¶ayxøIcMnYnRbEhl3KILÚEm:Rt. kareFVIdMeNIrd¾lM)akry³eBlR)aMbIéf¶KWedIm,IeTApÞaMgTwkkk Milam edayman Munsiyari CamUldæan. Safaris kñúg Corbett enAelIPaKxagekIt Garhwal enHKWtMbn; Kumaon Edl )aneFVIeGayl,Il,ajedaysMeNrelak Jim Corbett. vaKWCa stVxøacas;CageKbMputrbs;RbeTs\NÐabMrugdak;eQµaHtamGñkRbmaj;CnCatiGg;eKøs\NÐa nigGñkedIrpøÚvEdl)anERbkøayCaGñkGPirkS GñkniBn§ nigGñkFmµCatiniym. ]TüanCati Jim Corbett RKbdNþb;tMbn;FMTUlayBI 400eTA1200 Em:Rtx<s; CagTwksmuRT. CRmkstVxøaéRBcMbg KWkarRKb dNþb;edayedImeQI Sal ehIyGñkGaceRCIserIsCiHdMrI b¤CiHLanCIB Safari enAkñúgtMbn;enaH. eBlevlaEdll¥bMput kñúgkar emIstVxøa KWrvagBak;kNþalExemsa nigBak;kNþalExmifunaenAeBl EdlKRmbéRBeQIenHKWsUvRkas; nigstVxøamkRbPBTwkjwjab;. ebIkcMhr pÞHElVg valesµAeKehAfa chaurs begáItCadIEdlmanesµAsRmab; sambars, stV RCÚk stVkþan; nigstVkþan;lU. kñúgGMLúgeBlrdUvekþAEdlmanhVÚgdMrIéRBFMpþúMKñaenA chaurs TaMgenH. Tenø Ramganga nigédrbs;vapþl;CUnnUv»kasedIm,I EsVgrkstVéRBy:ag sem,ImEdl)anecjmkeRkAenArdUvekþAedIm,IEsVgrkTwk. eP RkeBI nigstVsøab bENþtTwk GacRtÚv)anemIl eXIjenAkñúgTenønigGagsþúkTwk Ramganga. dMeNIreTscrN_FmµCatienAkñúgnigenACuMvij Nainital eTAPaKxagekItén Corbett sßanIy_PñMén Nainital nigtMbn;EdlenA Ek,renaH KWmanlkçN³l¥\tex©aHsRmab; karedIrenAkñúgéRBFmµCatiPñM. Pangot Edlmancm¶ayRbmaN 15 KILÚEm:RtBI Nainital, enHKWCasYn]TüanzansYK’emIlbkSI CamYynwgbkSIPñMCaeRcInEdleyIgGac eXIjenATIenH nigenAEk,r Kilbury ehIy. Sattal KWCa kEnøgl¥bMputmYyeTotkEnøg sRmab;bkSI. GñkGacelatqRteyag)anenA Naukuchiatal enACit Nainital. karsÞÚcRtIeday ehaHehIrenA Uttarakhand )anTak;TajGñkcUlcitþsÞÚcRtImkdl; Edl)anmkdl; Tenøhimal½yedIm,I EsVgrk mahseer EdlCaehÁmEsVgrkRtI EdlmankarRbtayRbtb;CaxøaMgeBlcab;)anRtIenaH. Pancheshwar KWCatMbn; Uttarakhand rbs;sRmab;karsÞÚcRtI mahseer enATenøkalInig Saryu. dUecñHsUm evcbgVicrbs;Gñk\LÚvenHedIm,ITTYl)annuvsRms;d¾sNþcitþ nigkarTak;Tajrbs;rdæenH.


A gnarled bridge made entirely of roots spanned a swift flowing stream in our path. The surreal setting was Tolkienesque to say the least, as we wondered what adventures lay beyond. It was as if some sorcerer had cast a spell, leaving us speechless and transfixed. While we took in the dreamlike scene, two kids chirpily ran across the heavy bridge. Roughly paved with mud and stone, it swayed ever so gently, and the reverie was broken. This was no ordinary bridge. It was a ‘living root bridge’ of Meghalaya, locally called Jing Kieng Jri, shaped over centuries by entwining the fast-growing aerial roots of the Ficus elastica tree. In these remote hill tracts, long before the availability of cement and steel, these were age-old modes of crossing streams. It was an unwritten rule that anyone passing by would diligently twirl new wiry tendrils around older ones to strengthen the latticed structure. It was CSR taken to another level. We were at the root bridge at Riwai, a 2-km walk from Mawlynnong, a remote village in the East Khasi hills on the Indo-Bangladesh border. Our guide Henry explained that his village was named after the rocks hollowed by rainwater-maw is ‘stone’ in Khasi and lynnong means ‘cavity’. After all, this was Meghalaya, the abode of clouds, home to the rainiest place on earth, a title that had passed from Cherrapunjee and Mawsynram. With Cherra as our next stop, we were hoping to find out ... For now, we just wanted to float forever in the tranquil sun-dappled pools, but Henry promised to take us to a better spot. The jump from a little stream to a 300-m cascade was definitely an upgrade. The Wah Rymben river tumbled over a wide rock face as Niriang waterfall, ending in a deep pool fringed by reeds. Having a waterfall all to yourself is a rare luxury in a populous country like India. With butterflies for company, we lazed around for what seemed like hours. On the way back, we stopped at Maw Ryngkew Sharatia or Balancing Rock, an ancient Khasi shrine that existed long before the arrival of Christianity. A trio of monolithic stones or Mawbynnah stood outside every home or in the fields to honour ancestors.


In the old animist traditions of Meghalaya, stones, rivers, forests, all life forms were sanctified and nearly two centuries of proselytization had not eroded these beliefs. Sacred groves like Mawphlang were still zealously protected as sanctuaries. The road was lined with broom grass (Thysanolaena maxima), what we commonly call phool jhadu. A cash crop for locals, they harvested the inflorescence, which was made into brooms. Not surprisingly, Mawlynnong was pegged as ‘the cleanest village in Asia.’ The locals were indeed sticklers for cleanliness and we noticed cane trash baskets outside every home. Flower-lined pathways led us past Balang Presbyterian Church before we returned to our bamboo perch at Mawlynnong Guest House and Machan. All of a sudden, a crack of thunder boomed with the severity of a giant transformer bursting in the sky. We stepped out to witness nature’s sound and light show in all its fury. Flashes of lightning in the dark foreboding clouds above looked like explosions of some intergalactic battle, lighting up the plains of Sylhet below. There was a terrifying beauty to the whole experience. When we reached Cherrapunjee the next day, it had already received a fresh coat of rain. But then, it almost always rains in Cherrapunjee. And when high rainfall, humidity, and elevations of 1000-m rich in limestone come together, you get caves! With 1350 caves stretching over 400 km, Meghalaya has the deepest, longest, and largest labyrinth of caves in the Indian subcontinent. Driving through the mist, negotiating dizzying bends, we reached Mawsmai Caves. It was a good introduction to the subterranean world of stalactites and stalagmites, formed over thousands of years. There were all sorts of shapes- candles, cave contains, grotesque shapes, and cave pearls. It was apparent why Meghalaya was becoming a spelunking or caving destination with adventure enthusiasts heading to the Shnongrim Ridge in Jaintia Hills that holds Krem Liat Prah, the longest natural cave in India. The bounty of nature was apparent everywhere. Waterfalls like the Nohkalikai and Nohsngithiang Falls plummeted from high perches into aquamarine pools. It was the scenic beauty and cool climes that prompted the British to set up their first base in the North East at Sohra or Cherrapunjee. David Scott, Revenue Commissioner of Assam and agent to the Governor General came from the plains of Sylhet and died here in 1831. A stone memorial noted his contribution to society. The first missionary to arrive at Cherra was Rev Thomas Jones in 1841 and the Nongsawlia Presbyterian Church was built by him in 1846. A tablet marked the centenary of the Welsh Mission in the hills. Ramakrishna Mission’s lovely old building that dates back to 1931. After our local sightseeing, following quirky yellow signs, we finally reached our resort at Laitkynsew. It was a great base for birdwatching and long trudges into the valley to see more root bridges. But nothing could prepare us for the double-decker bridge at Nongriat. Rising water levels in the stream had forced locals to build a second bridge a little higher than the old one, hence the name. Knowing that we would soon be back in the urban sprawl of Shillong, we lingered at the pools, allowing tiny fish to nibble away at the dead skin of our tired feet. It was not the best way to return the favour, but soon we were nibbling on fish at a lakeside retreat, located on the banks of Meghalaya’s largest lake Ummiam or Barapani (large water). We relished the Khasi feast of kha rang (pan fried dry fish), doh sniang khleb (pork salad), jadob (rice flavoured with local turmeric), and Cherrapunjee chicken, a peppery chicken curry. Ri Kynjai was a great base for trekking to Lum Sohpetbneng or The Navel of Heaven, the most sacred mountain for the Khasis. As per local spiritual beliefs, while the Khyndaitrep or nine huts people remained in their celestial abode, the Hynniewtrep or the seven huts people of East Meghalaya descended to earth-interestingly, using a golden vine bridge atop the sacred peak. A repository of ancient wisdom and values, the peak was an umbilical cord to the divine. An annual pilgrimage is held on the first Sunday of February. Shillong, despite being Meghalaya’s bustling capital, had its own charm and all the trapp


-ings of a ‘hill station’-bracing climate, a water body with a jogger’s park in the form of Ward’s Lake, viewpoints like Shillong Peak, landscaped gardens at Elephant Falls, and a clutch of museums for the visitor. Don Bosco Museum, part of the Don Bosco Centre for Indigenous Cultures, shed light on local culture. The Butterfly Museum at Riatsamthiah, a private collection of the Wankhar family, showcased a dazzling array of butterflies, beetles and moths. The Rhino Heritage Museum was a piece of history by itself. Built in 1928, it was used as a small arms store by the British; in 1944, it housed Japanese PoWs during Second World War and was called Dungeon Lines; the 1/8 Gurkha Rifles used it as a magazine and, after independence, it lay abandoned until it was converted into a museum in 1998-99. There was a lot to Shillong. Historic churches, stunning architectural gems like the Brahmo Samaj building dating back to 1894, and small tidbits of history. Arundhati Roy was born here. Arthur Llewellyn Basham, author of the tome The Wonder That Was India, lies buried here. Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore lived here at his summer residence Mitali. His writing desk and chair adorn the Maharaja suite of Tripura Castle. The erstwhile summer retreat of Tripura’s Manikya dynasty, the castle was built in the 1920s and renovated into the first heritage hotel in the North East in 2003. In the evenings menfolk met at the Polo Ground for betting over the age-old sport of teer (archery). The younger generation sported funky hairdos and blasted rock music from their Made in China phones. We polished off a Khasi meal of pork and rice before hiring a cab back to Guwahati. As we walked out, the mist rolled in. Like the Cherrapunjee Resort sign said ‘Heads in clouds, feet firmly on ground’ ...



sßitenATId¾Esnq¶aybMputénRbeTs eKaledAEdlmanmnusSeTAdl;tictYcsm,Ür edaysøwkeQInigGakasFatuEdlBi)aksµan nigmumðÚb d¾q¶aj;EdlCakEnøgEdl pþl;PaBrMePIbEdlminGacbMePøc)an. mans<anrdibrdubmYyeFVIeLIgBIb¤seQI eyagtamlMhUrsÞwgCapøÚvedIrrbs;eyIg. ebIniyayeTAkarkMNt;d¾EbøkenHKW Tolkienesque dUcCacm¶l;rbs;eyIgfamanGVI elIsBIdMeNIrpSgeRBgenH. vahak;dUcCamanRKÚmnþGaKmmYycMnYn)andak;evnmnþ eFVI[eyIgenAes¶óm niyayminecj. xN³eBlEdleyIgkMBugsßitenAkñúgTidæPaB dUcsubinþ mankumarTaMgBIrnak;)anrt;qøgkat;s<any:agrIkray. s<aRkal edayPk; nigfµenHeyaltic²eFVI[subinþrlay)at;. s<anenHminEmnCas<anFmµtaeT. vaKWCa }s<anvløieQImanCIvitrbs; Meghalaya EdlGñkRsúkehAfaJing Kieng J1} EdlelcecjCarUbragrab;stvtSmkehIy RkgedayvløieQI Ficus d¾sVitniglUt las;rh½sBIelIEmkeQI. enAkñúgtMbn;PñMdac;RsyalTaMgenH CayUrmkehIymun eBlmansuIm:gt_nigEdk enHCaviFIburaNEdlGacqøkat; sÞwg)an. vaCak,ÜnKµankarkt;RtafanrNak¾edayEdlqøgkat;s<anenHRtÚvCYyRkgvløifµIelIvløicas; edayRbúgRby½tñedIm,IeFVI[s<an [kan;EtrwgmaM. vaCa CSR )anykeTAkan;kRmitmYyeTot. eyIg)ansßitenAs<anvløikñúgPUm Riwai mancmßay2KILÚEm:RtBI Mawlynnong EdlCaPUmidac;RsyalmYyenAkñúgPñMkasuIPaKxagekItenAtam beNþayRBMEdn\NÐÚbg;køaEds. mKÁúeTskrbs;eyIg elak Henry )anBnül;fa PUmirbs;elakRtÚv)andak;eQµaHtamduMfµRbehagkñúgmYy edaydMNk;TwkePøógCa }fµ} enAkñúgkasuI ehIy lynnong mann½yfa }Rbehag}. niyayrYmenHFøab;CatMbn Meghalaya bNþúMBBkCaTIEdlmanePøógeRcInCageKbMputenA elIEpndI garEdl)an bnþBI Cherrapunjee nig Mawsynram . Cherra EdlCaeKaledAbnÞab;rbs;eyIg eyIgsgÇwmfa nwgrkeXIj. sRmab;eBlenHeyIgRKan;Etcg;bENþtxøÜnCaerogrhUt enAkñúgføúkRBHGaTitüd¾s¶b;s¶at; b:uEnþelak Henry )ansnüafa nwgnaMeyIgeTAkEnøg l¥RbesIrCagmun. karbþÚrTItaMgBITwksÞwgmkTwkFøak;kMBs;300Em:Rt BitCakarRbesIr. Tenø Wah Rymben EbrmuxeTApÞaMgfµ TwkeRCaH Niriang FMmYyEdlcugenAkñúgGagTwkeRCAmYyGmedayedImERtg. manTwkeRCaHmYysRmab;EtxøÜneyIg mñak;ÉgBit CaerOgRbNItd¾kRmenAkñúgRbeTsEdlmancMnYnRbCaCneRcIndUcRbeTs\NÐa. 2222

GmdMeNIredayemGMe)A eyIgeFVIdMeNIrCuMvijyWt²hak;dUcCarab;em:ag. enAtampøÚv RtLb;mkvijenaHeyIg)anQb;enA Maw Ryngkew Sharatia b¤tulüPaBfµ EdlCaTIskáar³bUCa Kashi BIburaNEdlmanmunkarmkdl;énsasnaRKisþ. fµTaMgbIenAelIpÞaMgfµ mYy Mawbynnah QrenAxageRkApÞH b¤enAvalERsedIm,IeKarBdl;dUnta. kñúgRbéBNICMenOviBaØaNniymcas;én Meghlaya duMfµ Tenø éRB CIvitTaMgGs;RtÚv)an]TÞis ehIyCitBIrstvtSénkarbþÚrsasnaBImYyeTAmYy CMenOTaMgenHenAminTan;)at;bg;enAeLIy. éRBBisidædUc MawphlangRtÚv)aneKkarBardUcCRmkstV. pøÚvenHRtÚv)antRmg;edayeRbIesµAGem,as (Thysanolaena maxima) EdlCaTUeTAehAfa jhadu phool. dMNaMsRmab; GñkRsúk EdlBYkeK)anRbmUlpl)ac;páa EdlRtÚv)aneKykeTAeFVIGMe)as. CaerOgFmµta Mawlynnong RtÚv)aneKsmÁal;Ca }PUmis¥atenAtMbn;GasuI}. GñkRsúkRtÚv)aneKBitCaRbkan;Gnam½y ehIyeyIg)ankt;smÁal; eXIjk®nþksMrameFVIBIepþAenAxageRkA RKb;pÞH. pøÚvEdlmanpáaGm)annaMBYkeyIg qøgvihar Balang Presbyterian muneBlEdleyIgRtLb;mkbnÞHb£sSIeyIgvjenAÉ pÞHsMNak Mawlynnong nig Machan. mYyrMeBcenaH semøgpÁrlan; xøaMgCamYynwg PaBF¶n;F¶rénkarpøas;bþÚrpÞúHenAelIemX. eyIg)anQaneCIgecjedIm,IeFVICasakSI FmµCati bgðajsMeLgnigBnøWFmµCatikñúgePøIgkMhwgrbs;xøÜn. BnøWPøWepøkénrnÞHkñúg BBkexµA xagelIemX emIleTAdUcCakarpÞúHBIelIkarRbyuT§PBpáay ehIyva)anbMPøW valTMnab Sylhet EdlenAxageRkam. vamanPaBRss;s¥at kartk;søúteTAnwgbT BiesaFn_TaMgmUlKW. (xagelI) Cherrapunjee manTwkFøak;CaeRcIn rYmTaMgTwkFøak; Nohkalikai KYr[cab;GarmµN_. (xageRkam) TIlandunbUsáÚkñúg Shillong EdlCamCÄmNÐlGb;rMedaymanmhaviTüal½yCaeRcIn enACuMvijva. eBleyIgeTAdl; Cherrapunjee enAéf¶bnÞab;enaH va)anePøógFøak;rYcfµI². b:uEnþeRkaymkvaEtgEtePøógenA Cherrapunjee. ehIyenAeBlEdlePøógFøak;xøaMg sMeNIm nig km<s;1000Em:Rt EdlsMbUreTAedayfµkMe)arFøak;mkCamYyKña GñkRtÚvcUlrUgPñM! edaymanrUgPñM1350 latsn§wgCag 400KILÚEm:Rt MeghlayamanCeRmAeRCACageK EvgCageK nigFMCageKbMputénrUgPñMd¾sµúRKsµaj enA]bTVIb\NÐa. karebIkbrqøkat; G½BÞ bt;cuHeLIgtampøÚvekag eyIgnwgeTAdl;rUgPñM Mawsmai . 23 23

vaCakarENnaMl¥edIm,I BiPBeRkamdIénkar (xageRkam) RBHvihar Nongsawlia Presbyterian EdlCaRBHviharTImYyEdlbegáItenA Meghlaya kñúgqñaM1846. sþaLak;TItnigsþaLak;mIt)anbegáIteLIgGs;rab;Ban;qñaMmkehIy. vamanRTg;RTayeRcIndUcCaeTon rUgPñM rUbk,ac;cmøak; nigKuCrUgPñM. vaCakarc,as;faehtuGVI)anCa Meghlaya )ankøayTisedATsSnarUgPñM edaymanGñkeFVIdMeNIrpSgeRBgeq<aHeTAkan; Shnongrim Ridge enA Jaintia Hills Edlman Krem Liat Prah EdlmanrUgPñMEvgCag eKbeg¥aHenAkñúgRbeTs\NÐa. PaBsm,ÚrN_ eTAedayFmµCatienHKWCak;EsþgmanenARKb;TIkEnøg. TwkeRCaHdUcCa Nohkalikai nig Nohsngithiang Føak;cuHBITIx<s;cUleTA kñúgGagTwkFmµCati. vaCasRms;eTsPaB nigRsúkERsd¾RtCak;EdlCMruj[ Gg;eKøsbegáItmUldæandMbUgrbs;xøÜnenAPaKxageCIgxag ekItenA Sohra b¤ Cherrapunjee. David Scott sñgkarrdæ Assam EpñkcMNUlnigCaPñak;garedIm,I GKÁeTsaPi)alEdl mkBItMbn;valTMnabén Sylhet ehIy)ansøab;enATIenHkñúgqñaM 1831. fµrMlwkGnusSavrIy_)anbgðajBIkarcUlrYmcMENkrbs;xøÜncMeBaHsgÁm. GñkpSaysasnaTImYyEdlmkdl; Cherry KW Rev Thomas Jones kñúgqñaM1841 ehIyvihar Nongsawlia Presbyterian RtÚv)ansg;eLIgedayKat;kñúgqñaM1846. Tablet Edl)an kMNt;buNüxYb100qñaMénebskkmµCnCatiEv:lenAtamPñM. GKarcas;KYr[RsLaj; énebskkmµ Ramakrishna Edl)anbegáIt eLIgtaMgBIqñaM1931. bnÞab;BIkaredIrkmSanþkñúgRsúk bnÞab;BImansBaØaelOgcMElk TIbMputeyIg)anQan dl;rmNIydæanrbs;eyIgnA Laitkynsew. vaCamUldæanGs©arüsRmab;emIlbkSInig karedIrd¾lM)ak EvgcUleTAkñúgRClgPñMeTAemIlb¤ss<anCaCaeRcIneTot. b:uEnþKµan GVIGacerobcMeyIgsRmab;Cas<anBIrCan;enA Nongriat. karekIneLIgénkRmitTwkenA tamGUr)anbgçM[GñkRsúk ksags<an TIBIrx<s;Cags<ancas;bnþic ehtudUcenH eQµaH edaydwgfaeyIgnwgmanRtLb;mkvijenATIRkúg Shillong kñúgeBlqab;² eyIgbnþenA GagTwkyUrCagsBVdg EdlGnuBaØat[RtItUc²cwkEs,kekasikaEdl gab;eTAenAelIeCIgrbs;eyIg. vaminEmnCaviFIl¥bMputedIm,IsgKuNeT b:uEnþeyIgcab;c,icRtIenAtMbn;bwgkMsanþEdlmanTItaMgenARcaMgrbs; bwg Meghlaya d¾FMput rbs; Ummian b¤ Barapani (TwkFM) enaH. eyIg)anTak;citþnwgbuNü Kashién Kharang (xÞHeconRtIs¶Üt) doh sniang khleb (saLat;sac;RCÚk) Jadob (GgárlayedayremotkñúgRsúk) nigsac;man; Cherrapunjee karIsac;man;eRmc.


KWCamUldæanGs©arüsRmab;edIreTAkan; Lumb¤eTAp©iténsßanbrmsux EdlCaPñMBisidæbMput sRmab;KhasisenH. dUckñúgCMenOxagviBaØaNkñúgtMbn; xN³eBl Edl Khyndaitrep b¤mnusSrs;enAkñúgeragxÞmR)aMbYnnak; enAbnþkñúgTIlMenAbrmsuxrbs;BYkeK Hynniewtrep b¤mnusS xÞmR)aMBIrnak;énPaKxagekIt Meghlaya edayeRbIs<anCaedIm TMBaMg)ayCUrmaselI kMBUlkRmitkMBUlBisidæ. XøaMgénR)aCJanig témøburaN kMBUlenHKWCaTgsukeTAnwgRBH. k,ÜnFmµyaRtaRbcaM qñaMmYyEdlRtÚv)anR)arB§eLIgenAéf¶GaTitüTI1 énExkumÖ³. Shillong ebIeTaHbIxøÜnCardæFanI Meghlaya d¾mmajwkvaenA EtmanPaBTak;Tajrbs;xøÜn nigCaGnÞak;Tak;Taj }GakasFatu tamsßanIy_elIPñM} k,alTwkCamYy ]TüansRmab;GñkefµIreCIgkñúg TMrg;Ca Ward’s Lake kEnøgTsSnadUckMBUlPñMdUc Shyllon sYnc,arenAÉeRCaHTwkdMrI nig sarmnÞIrsRmab;GñkTsSna. sarmnÞIrdunbUsáÚ EdlCaEpñkmYyénmCÄmNÐldunbUsáÚsRmab; vb,CnCatiedImPaKtic )ankøayCaBnøWenAelIvb,Fm_kñúgRsúk. sarmnÞIrenAemGMe)AenAÉ Riatsamthiah EdlCakarRbmUl ÉkCnrbs;RKÜsar Wankhar )andak;taMgbgðajkarerobcMd¾ Tak;TajcitþénemGMe)A stVkEBa© nigstVxµÚt. sarmnÞIrebtikPNÐ rmas KWCabMENk énRbvtþisaRsþmYyedayxøÜnvapÞal;. eday)an ksageLIgenAqñaM1928 vaRtÚv)aneK eRbICahagGavuF edaynCati Gg;eKøs)an. kñúgqñaM1944 va)anpÞúk PoWs CnCati Cb:unkñúgkMLúg eBls®gÁamelak ehIyeK)anehAfa ExSKukggwt (Dungeon Lines) kaMePøIgEvg Gurkha 1/8 RtÚv)aneKeRbIvaCaTsSnavdþI nigbnÞab;BITTYl)anÉkraCüPaB, vaRtÚv)aneKe)aHbg;ecal rhUt dl;vaRtÚv)anbEmøgeTACasarmnÞIrmYykñúg1998-1999. vaman CaeRcInsRmab; Shillong. RBHviharRbvtþisaRsþ t,Úgsßabtümµ KYr[PJak;ep¥IldUcGaKar Brahmo Samai KitRtwmqñaM1894 ehIyGahard¾q¶aj;tUcmYyénRbvtþisaRsþ. elak Arundhati Roy )anekItenATIenH. elakCaGñkniBn§ Llewellyn Basam CaGñkniBn§esovePAGcäriy³EdlRtÚvCa\NÐa)ankb;enATIenH. C½ylaPI rgVan;NUEbl Rabindranath Tagore )anrs;enA TIenHenAÉlMenAdæanenArdUvekþArbs;Kat; Mitali. C½ylaPIrgVan; NUEbl Rabindranath Tagore)anrs;enATIenHenAÉ lMenAdæandUvekþArbs;Kat;enA Mitali. tusresrrbs;Kat; nig ekAGIlMGrQut Maharaja énR)asaT Tripura. karsRmak; rdUvekþAkalBImunénraCvgS Tripura Manikya R)asaTRtÚv)an sagsg;eLIgkñúgqñaM1920 ehIyEklm¥eTACasNæaKarebtiPNÐ elIkdMbUgenAkñúgPaK |sankñúgqñaM2003. Ri Kynjai sohpetbneng

enAeBll¶ac cas;²CYbCuMKñaenAFøadI b:ULÚsRmab;Pñal;elIkILaEdl mantaMgBIyUrNas;mkehIyKW)aj;RBÜj. ekµgCMnan;eRkayeFVIsk; m:UtehIycak;ePøgt®nþIr:ukrbs;BYkeKecjBIkñúgBITUrs½BÞédplitenA cinrbs;eK. eyIg)ansRmityk Gahar Khasi sac;RCÚknig)ay muneBlCYl LanRtLb;mk Guwahati vij. xN³EdleyIg )anedIrecj G½BÞEdl)anehaHcUlkñúg. dUcCasBaØa rmNIydæan Cherrapunjee niyayfa }k,alenAkñúgBBk eCIgy:ag rwgmaM enAelIdI}.



text Commander Arun Jyoti (Retd) Commander Arun Jyoti (Retd) is an alumnus of National Defence Academy, Naval College of Engineering, IGNOU and Defence Services Staff College. A die hard Submariner, he is now retired from the Indian Navy and based out of New Delhi. He handles the operations of an EPC Company, is a keen blogger, traveller and Golfer. He can be reached at

King Suryavarman-II of the Khmer Empire climbed the steps and looked at the marvel of his creation. The Sun had not yet risen and the shadows of the Angkor Wat Temple looked awesome against the dark backdrop. Suryavarman-II took a deep breath and the pure cool air filled his lungs. He waited as the Sun broke out and the glory of Angkor Wat exploded in all its might as Sun’s rays lit up the majestic art work that had been created over 03 decades. Over 5 million tons of building material had been used to arch out the Angkor Wat. It was the tribute of Suryavarman-II to his Lord Vishnu. Suryavarman-II was all of 23 and a powerful young man when he snatched power by killing his great uncle, Dharanindravarman I, 26

while he was riding an elephant. An inscription says that Suryavarman killed the man “as Garuda [a mythical bird] on a mountain ledge would kill a serpent.” Suryavarman-II was destined to rule with wars and battles littered all around. He successfully built up the Khmer Empire over a large territory and the empire prospered. Suryavarman-II defeated rival claimants to the throne and established sole rule over Cambodia by 1113, reuniting the country after more than 50 years of unrest. Warlike and ambitious, he expanded the limits of Cambodia to include much of what is now Thailand; his patronage stretched as far west as the frontiers of the Burmese state of Pagan, south to the coast of the Gulf of Thailand (including part of the eastern coast of the Malay Peninsula), and east to the kingdom of Champa in the southern part of what is now Vietnam. He venerated Lord Vishnu, a deity often depicted as a protector, and installed a statue of the God in Angkor Wat’s central tower. This devotion can also be seen in one of the most remarkable reliefs at Angkor Wat, located in the southeast of the temple. The relief shows a chapter in the Hindu story of creation known as the “churning of the sea

of milk.” In today’s Cambodia, Johnan Soklang Chea and Sophear M Sreat are two of many enterprising women folk. They both have overcome many hurdles in their respective lives and proudly lead their own organizations and work commonly with Cambodian Women Entrepreneurs Association. They both represent vibrancy, hard work and a zeal to excel. They are out there to create a legacy carved out of their respective lives. As Suryavarman-II walked towards his marvel using the main entrance from the west (a direction associated with Vishnu) across a stone causeway, with guardian lions marking the way, he knew that his end was near. He had ruled for almost 37 years and knew that this would be his resting place as yet gain the upheavals in the Khmer Empire’s boundaries had begun to redraw the boundaries. The temple still had many works to do, but Suryavarman-II would not see its completion. In 1150 Suryavarman died in the midst of a new campaign against Champa (present day South- West Vietnam), leaving his people exhausted by war and victimized by the once-subservient Chams, who even-

tually ravaged Angkor. He was (probably) buried inside the marvel that he had created-The Angkor Wat. Welcome to today’s Siem Reap, a Cambodian city located 7.5 Kms from Angkor Wat. The city where the Angkor temple was built and was once the capital of the Khmer Empire. This city contains hundreds of temples. Its population once may have been over 1 million people. It was easily the largest city in the world until the Industrial Revolution. A busy tourist destination today, Siem Reap, mingles various nationalities into its tiny fold and provides a neat arrangement for the lost humanity. The Pub Street hosts the action for the winding down tourists catching up on traces of ancient human civilization. The bustling market, neat hotels and the night bazaar wind down late into the night as the music, the Apsara Dance shows and revelry of the Pub Street usurps the tourists. The cuisine delights includes animal lives of many form and shapes and is coupled with relaxing massage parlors where the tired bones are creaked out for nuts. Early in the morning, the sea of varied humanity gathers in front of the Angkor Wat’s


main entrance and waits with baited breath as the Sun pitches in to take its various positions. The temple domes stand out in the Sun and the dull grey structure tells its glorious past to the mesmerized tourists. The atmosphere around the temple has a chill effect till the mighty Sun takes over with its warmth toning up the Angkor’s stones. Angkor Wat is surrounded by a 650-foot-wide (200 m) moat that encompasses a perimeter of more than 3 miles (5 km). This moat is 13 feet deep (4 m) and would have been designed to stabilize the temple’s foundation, preventing groundwater from rising too high or falling too low. Building Angkor Wat was an enormous undertaking that involved quarrying, careful artistic work and lots of digging. To create the moat around the temple, 1.5 million cubic meters (53 million cubic feet) of sand and silt were moved, a task that would have required thousands of people working at one time. The buildings at Angkor Wat posed their own challenges. To support them a tough material called laterite was used, which in turn was encased with softer sandstone that was used for carving the reliefs. These sandstone blocks were quarried at the Kulen Hills, about 18 miles (30 km) to the north. Recent research proves that they were transported to the site by a series of canals. The sea of humanity moves inside the temple complex as the Sun breaks out and the high walls of the premises poses a question to each visitor, “How must this Temple have been built?” The steep stairs challenge today’s humans and the dull grey center tower presents a majestic look as bewildered tourists queue up to climb its steep staircase. The climb clearly indicates that reaching the abode of God is not easy, one has to work hard for it. The ruins of civilization near Angkor Wat are magnificent. In its prime, this civilization was much advanced and would have stayed in most pristine environment. The system of canals would have brought in great prosperity and the powerful Khmer Kingdom under Suryavarman-II would have thrived with busy humans. In its complete glory, the temples of Angkor city would have had hues of bright shades and imaginations runs amok as one visualizes the technological challenges those humans surmounted. 28

A swift stroke from Suryavarman-II would have been the result of years of practice of martial arts. With that one stroke, he captured the power and along with his priest Diwakarpandita crafted a brand new history. Alas, very few humans live to see the complete glory of their visualizations. Indeed, it is not possible also as the humans are designed to think. Many who achieve something are always looking forward and thus it is difficult to see the culmination of their dreams. An Angkor Wat today with all available technologies may not be possible in the time that it took Suryavarman-II to almost build his dream. He and his team were designers and planners of great qualifications and their project management techniques were amazing. The modern Cambodia is a treat for the Lonely Planet. The shades of history have not been very kind to this country but the picture emerging out today is a saga of human fight back. The country seems bustling and moving to capture the lost times. The fighting spirit is littered all across the country and the northward trends are clearly visible. Today’s Cambodia is epitomized by its young generation which is building up a dream for a better tomorrow. Neat and tidy environment coupled with smooth discipline adds


up to the comfort of the humans. A festive spirit erupts every evening when humanity gathers around the majestic conglomeration of rivers Tonle Sap, Mekong and Bassac. The day winds down with happiness even as the new morning beckons. A vibrant Cambodia awaits tourists with options of great tourism and connect with lost civilization. Vibrant Johnan Soklang Chea and Sophear M Sreat are shining examples of the fighting Cambodian spirit which is bound to touch humanity. Enterprise management is a skilled path which many fear to tread. Johnan, Sophear and many more of their ilk have decided to walk the talk with ĂŠlan, grace and honor. The legacy of Suryavarman-II is dull grey today, but, it has withstood the rigors of times and stands tall within the ruins. Angkor Wat may have lost its colors (which todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s world can only imagine) but Cambodians of today are building the country to its original vibrancy. Angkor remains the fabled backdrop of Cambodia and its young generation knows the path to new vigor and glory. We discovered only about 20% of what Cambodia offers to the tourists and looking forward to the next trip. All the best if you decide to visit Cambodia and discover this glorious part of the Lonely 29


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Biking Queens with Deputy Prime MInister of Cambodia. H.E Sok Ann

Painting Exhibition

Yoga demonstration during Painting Exhibition

Second India Cinema week

Second India Cinema week

International Day of Yoga at Sokha Beach, Sihanoukville




International Day of Yoga at Angkor Wat, Siem Reap

International Day of Yoga at Angkor Wat, Siem Reap

International Day of Yoga at Sokha Beach, Sihanoukville

International Day of Yoga at Olympic Stadium, Phnom Penh

International Day of Yoga at at University of Health Sciences (UHS), Phnom Penh.

International Day of Yoga at Olympic Stadium, Phnom Penh


International Day of Yoga in front of Bayon temple, Siem Reap

International Day of Yoga in front of Bayon temple, Siem Reap

International Day of Yoga at Sokha Beach, Sihanoukville

International Day of Yoga at Sokha Beach, Sihanoukville

Commercial Arbitration and Taxation Update

Commercial Arbitration and Taxation Update




Indian Embassy handing over it's libraray books to National Library

Indian Embassy handing over it's libraray books to National Library

Constituion and making of modern India, seminar on birth anniversary of Dr. B. R. Ambedhkar.

Constituion and making of modern India, seminar on birth anniversary of Dr. B. R. Ambedhkar.

Constituion and making of modern India, seminar on birth anniversary of Dr. B. R. Ambedhkar.

Constituion and making of modern India, seminar on birth anniversary of Dr. B. R. Ambedhkar.



Just then, a heavenly voice resounded, “Listen, O Rain-god ! your friend, Takshaka, has left the Khandava Forest to a place of safety. So, you must not worry for him. Let the fire-god burn the forest to ashes along with all the criminals hiding in it. You are no match for Arjuna and Krishna. So, it is in your interest to beg their pardon and return to your heavenly abode.” Hearing the heavenly voice, Indra lost no time to realize the situation. Moreover, his friend, Takshaka, had already left the forest to go to a place of safety. So, he thought it wise to apologise to Krishna after invoking him in various ways. When pardoned, he blessed Krishna and Arjuna and went back to his heavenly abode.


demons and other fierce creatures. Most of them were killed on the spot. Just then, Lord Krishna saw Mayasura coming out of the abode of Takshaka. He got ready to kill him but the fire-god wanted to eat him up. So, he chased him hotly. Caught up between the devil and the deep sea, Mayasura ran to Arjuna and fell at his feet. He implored the brave Pandava to save his life. Arjuna consoled him and promised to protect his life because he had approached him for shelter and safety. At this, the fire-god turned back to the forest and it kept burning for 15 days at a stretch. Having his appetite fully satisfied, he went ‘back to his heavenly abode.

MAYASURA, THE DEMON With the return of Lord Indra, the forest came to be engulfed in horrible flames once again. So, the demons, snakes, fierce animals, birds and other creatures got afraid. Troubled by the fury of the flames and seeing Arjuna and Krishna ready with their weapons, they began to implore for mercy. Not only this, many of them were seen trying to run away to places of safety.

After the departure of the fire-god, Arjuna and Krishna came to the bank of the Yamuna along with Mayasura. All the three sat down under a shady tree to take rest for some time. Mayasura thanked Arjuna for sparing his life and said to the Pandava prince with folded hands, “I’ve no words to thank you, O great warrior. Let me know, please, what I can do for you. I am in possession of a miraculous skill of architecture.”

At this, Lord Krishna hurled his chakra at the fleeing

“Then prepare a beautiful assembly-hall for King Yud

hishthira. It should be above all human-skill,â&#x20AC;? said Arjuna and Krishna in one voice. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I am here to obey you, sir,â&#x20AC;? said the demon. And he set about the task of constructing the hall for the Pandavas. It had an auditorium built round a beautiful pool of water. The auditorium had a marble floor studded with costly pearls shaped like various small water-animals-fish, frogs, crabs etc. It was in level with the surface of the water in the pool. As a result, it also gave the appearance of a pool. Anybody could mistake it for water. The Pandavas were pleased to see the wonderful assembly-hall and thanked Mayasura for building such a novel hall. But he was so obliged to Arjuna that he requested him to accept a few more things from him. When allowed, he asked to be permitted to go to the Mainaka Mountain and bring a heavy mace for Bhima and a shell (shankh) for Arjuna. This shell was named Devadatta and it belonged to the water-god-Varuna.

have them. He offered the mace to Bhima and the shell to Arjuna. They were also highly pleased to get these things. EPISODE OF JARASANDHA Arjuna had returned from his self-imposed exile and everything had been going on smoothly. Mayasura had completed the Royal Assembly Hall that was really worth seeing. King Yudhishthira effected a ceremonial entry into this hall. He had invited a large number of kings and held a grand reception in their honour. The Brahmanas who performed the hall-warming ceremony were given big gratifications as also the king distributed alms to the poor very generously. Thus the merriment went on for a number of days.

Arjuna allowed the demon to go and bring the two things named above. So, he proceeded to Mainaka Mountain and reached there in only two days. Procuring the mace and the shell, Mayasura returned to Indraprastha and placed them at the feet of King Yudhishthira. The king felt extremely delighted to



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India digest Vol 34  

India digest Vol 34