Narmada Parikrama or Circumambulation Undertaken on foot by Dinkar Patil November 2014 India Part 5
The Narmada Parikrama is basically a circumambulation of the narmada river undertaken in this case by foot. The total journey is 2600 Kms From the source of the Narmada to its End and then back again to the source.This particular Photodairy(Note textual diary is coming soon) is being published in 8 parts by TPW exclusively. This particular Journey was undertaken in a small initial group of 3 walkers that then dropped to two.The Walking part of the Journey began in Vadodara Gujurat India and ended in Jabalpur Madhya Pradesh India.a total walking distance of 800 kms that was completed in 32 days, with rest stops, with an average of 30 kms, walked per day for a total per day, walking time of between 7-8 hours.
Narmada Parikrama (Wikipedia)
The importance of the Narmada River as sacred is testified by the fact that the pilgrims perform a holy pilgrimage of a Parikrama or Circumambulation of the river. The Narmada Parikrama, as it is called, is considered to be a meritorious act that a pilgrim can undertake. Many sadhus (saints) and pilgrims walk on foot from the Arabian Sea at Bharuch inGujarat, along the river, to the source in Maikal Mountains (Amarkantak hills) in Madhya Pradesh and back along the opposite bank of the river. It is a 2,600-kilometre (1,600 mi) walk. The Parikrama is also performed along the southern bank from its source (Amarkantak hills) to the mouth (Bharuch) and returning along the northern bank, and it is considered to be of the highest religious efficacy.
During the Narmada Parikrama, devotees have to pass through a place called Shulpaneshwar ki Jhari, a religious place in Gujarat with links dating back to the Mahabharata epic story. The legend says that the Pandavas returning victorious from Kurukshetra war were intercepted at Shulpaneswar by Eklavya and his group of tribal Bhils and looted them (Pandvaas) of all their belongings. Since then it is a custom that pilgrims on a Narmada Parikrama, while passing through this place, expect to be stripped of all their belongings leaving them with the bare essentials to carry on till some philonthropists give them donations on the way to carry on. With construction of the Sardar Sarovar Dam in Gujarat on the Narmada River, the Shulpaneshwar Temple has submerged under the reservoir, necessitating the pilgrims to take a circuitous route to continue on their journey.