Sri M at the Dad Dhuladev Mandir Dokar Ghat - Narsinghpur
At Dhokar Ghat, the start point of the 300th day of Walk of Hope 2015-16
Sri M at the Bajrang Mandir - Bahoripar
Reception at Sahajpura - Narasinghpur
Dr Kailash Chandra Jatav MLA Gotegon explains the intricacies of sugarcane extraction to Sri M - Sahajpura
Reception at Belkhedi - Narsinghpur
Warm reception at Belkedi after crossing river Sher
Walking along SH 22 was a delight with huge shady trees
Sri M acknowledges the warm welcome of a young one at Gotegaon
Sri M at Gotegaon doing what he does best - interacting with the community - Gundrai
Walking on in India’s heartlands towards Srinagar, Sri M and the padyaatris (travellers on foot) covered a distance of 14 kilometres, leaving behind the city of Narsinghpur. The day also marked the 300th day of Walk of Hope. Although it was not celebrated as such, there was an air of exhilaration, especially for the walkers who have been walking from Kanyakumari - 300 days on the road – on the move, every meal at a different place, most nights under different roofs, meeting tens and even hundreds of people everyday – this was something they had not even dreamt of. Walking over 4200 Km was something which they had never thought themselves capable of. This is surely a story in the making but very real for the people experiencing the journey.
Leaving from the Dada Dhuladev Mandir of Narsinghpur after a reception, there were many people who joined Sri M and the core group of walkers. Once more, they were back on the narrow, meandering roads in villages, full of quiet and peace. Here, the houses are old and people look old. Mud-baked walls, mud floors, tiled roofs, thatched sheds, cows, dogs, hens, ducks, noisy children, wrinkly elders, bright natural colours and the odd potted plant - these make the usual home here. All living things look at them in surprise as the procession walks by. The women and men are off somewhere, perhaps working in the fields. People’s ways are still old in the sense that they have not yet been modernised, thankfully! They seem to be simple, carry smiles on their faces with a simple elegant grace and share the little they have without a second thought.
They continue being inundated by welcome parties that stop them every second kilometre. Even though they have been walking shorter distances these last few days, it is taking them 6 to 7 hours to cover the distance. Today it was no different. Dr Kailash Chandra Jatav, MLA, Gotegaon joined Sri M and was with the padyaatra (journey of foot) for a few hours.
Reaching Gotegaon well into the seventh hour of the walk, Sri M was received there by a large group and loud drums. The walkers then proceeded onwards to the village square, a large open space under a very ancient and very large tree where about 600 people had loosely gathered. Sri M addressed them very briefly about the objective of the walk and Maanav Ekta (Unity in Humanity).
The padyaatris were then taken to their resting place and retired for the day. There were no other programs scheduled for the rest of the day.