We have heard of Shravan Kumar from Ramayana, who took his blind and disabled parents on a pilgrimage.
Just like him, Kailash Giri, is taking his blind mother to the Char Dham yatra, that too on foot. He says his mother has only this journey to look forward to.
Hailing from Madhya Pradesh, Giri, now 48, started the journey 20 years ago when one day his mother expressed her desire to go on a pilgrimage of all the four main dhams, which is holy to Hindus. She said she would like to do it on foot.
Giri, who straps a basket on his shoulder in which his mother sits, said he has walked 36,582 km and the journey has now entered its last leg.
“I was 28 when I started on this. I am almost 50 now. I have to complete this yatra, both for myself and my mother. I have travelled for 20 years, I will walk for a few more,” he said.
The modern times ‘Shravan Kumar’, Giri starts his day every morning at about 6.30 am. His experience has been wonderful as people selflessly helps them.
“I start daily in the morning. Then again in the evening for a couple of hours. My experience of travelling through the country has been beautiful. There are wonderful people in India, who selflessly help us. We survive on donations and food that they give us. It’s always enough,” he said.
When asked what keeps him going, Giri said he owes his life to his mother.
“I was 14 when I fell from a tree and would have surely died had my mother not taken care of me and prayed day in and day out. I owe my life to her. That gives me strength and moves me.”