Uttarakhand: Hemkund Sahib opens to devotees

Uttarakhand: Hemkund Sahib opens to devotees
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Gopeshwar: Portals of the Hemkund Sahib, a famous Sikh shrine in the Garhwal Himalayas in Uttarakhand, were opened for devotees on Friday with the first batch of over 120 pilgrims attending the ceremony.

The Guru Granth Sahib was brought into the diwan hall at 9 am and the gates of the temple were thrown open for devotees after traditional rituals, manager of the gurdwara at Govindghat Sardar Seva Singh said.

The opening of the temple was followed by a recitation of the Sukhmani Sahib and shabd-kirtan, he said.

The gates of the shrine surrounded by snow-clad peaks at a height of nearly 15,000 feet have been opened late by three months this year owing to the coronavirus pandemic which has cast its shadow on pilgrimages to most sites in the state.

The number of pilgrims has also been kept limited due to mandatory social distancing norms but there was no lack of enthusiasm among over 120 pilgrims from Delhi and Punjab who attended the event, Sardar Seva Singh said.

A 19-km trek from Govindghat leads to Hemkund Sahib located in Chamoli district.