President, AK HAZARIKA ONGC Executives Welfare Association, New Delhi , welcome all Members on this Site
ONGC Executives Welfare Association, New Delhi, welcomes Retired Executives
Welcome to site of ONGC Executives Welfare Association, New Delhi

HEAVENLY VOYAGE TO MANALI

We already had three successful trips in the past to Nainital, Rajasthan and Dharamshala. Keeping in view encouraging response from our members and to continue with this practice, a trip was planned for Manali, Kullu and Manikaran. We started working on this project seriously and in the meantime this  proposal was put up to the executive body for approval.  However this approval was getting delayed. But since we had already put in lot of effort and the arrangements were in the advance stage, we decide to go ahead  of our own. As we were not left with much of the time to mobilize our finances to make advance payment to our tour operator, we had to take in serving ONGC executives and non ONGC personnel, who were readily available for their contribution. This trip was firmed up from 14th April to 19th April.  M/s Getway India Holidays Pvt.Ltd., Janakpuri, were our travel agents and a 40 seater Volvo coach was part of the package.   

The onward journey was planned to depart at 1730 Hrs on 14th April, from Kailash building, Connaught Place. Our full complement was of 40 individuals, including 13 couples and 14 singles.  All the members arrived before the scheduled time. However the bus could depart at 2130 hrs. due to problem between our tour operator and bus owner.  These were the anxious moments but once everybody boarded the bus, it changed to all enthusiastic & pleasure moment. Since it was already too late, on the way our first halt was at HAVELI for dinner. As was advised earlier, most of the members carried their own meal and the rest enjoyed delicacies of Haveli. The overnight  road journey to Manali was very smooth and comfortable. On the way, three halts were made to loosen the limbs and to get re-fresh.
Since we started late, the expected time of arrival in Manali was not before 15th April after noon. As such it was decided to have BRUNCH near Bhuntar. We finally reached our hotel , VICTORY RESORT, at 1430 hrs. We  covered a distance of 544 kmt.  between Delhi   and Manali in 17 hours. Although the journey was long but our members were exceptionally in high spirit in all respect. In the beginning there were little commotions while rooms were being allotted but all went well. The weather was cool and exceptionally  pleasant and scenic beauty around the hotel was awesome. With it’s breathtaking landscape, lush green valleys and cool climate, all of our members were fully charged  and were ready with in half an hour for evening sight visit . We were provided with 3 tempo travelers and a car for our sight visits during our stay.  We visited Hadimba temple, Budhist temple and National park. By the time we returned to our hotel, it was already quite late. By this time , we were exhausted , since we were up since yesterday. Every body had quick dinner and retired for the night.

This is a picturesque hill station encircled by snowy mountains and dense pinewood with meandering  BEAS river, Manali is famed for it’s aesthetic beauty. Lying at an altitude of 6260 ft., Manali is the premier hill station in the Kullu valley whose beauty lies in the ever flowing Beas river with gradients and apple orchards.

Next day on 16th Morning, after breakfast, we left for snow point as Rohtang Pass was closed. This is surrounded by snow clad mountains. It was a rare sight to see our members both ladies and gents, climb up the mountain slope and reach snow point. The age factor vanished and every body was full of enthusiasm. From there we proceeded to Solang Valley. On the way, we managed for lunch in a dhaba. This location was alongside river Beas, a perfect spot for fun and food. In Solang valley, there is a ropeway . Also this place is famous for para gliding. This is an ideal picnic spot. By the time we returned to our hotel, it was late evening. A small party was arranged in dinning room followed by dinner.  

On 17th morning, after quick breakfast, we left for Manikaran.  Manikaran is located in the Parvati Valley on the river Parvati in the Kullu District of Himachal Pradesh. It is an altitude of 5780 ft. and is located about 80 km from Manali. This small town attracts tourists for it’s hot springs and pilgrim centre.

We reached Manikaran at 1230 hrs. First of all , every body had their first hand experience of  sulphur hot springs. It was enthralling experience to witness both, water from the hot spring and cold water of Parvati river running alongside and mixing together. Some of us took holy plunge into the river. Thereafter we visited Manikaran  Gurudwara, which was the major attraction and is  situated on the bank of Parvati river.  After darshan, we were served with langar. It was amazing experience to witness Gurudwara langar being cooked in the boiling spring water. Few of us also took active part in this langar sewa. We started our return journey around 1630 hrs. On our way back, we made a brief stopover for refreshment ,on the main highway near Kullu bypass. There was a private cottage industry emporium.  Our members took best advantage and made brisk shopping. We reached back to our hotel at 1830 hrs.  A get together was arranged in the open lounge. However, the moment function started, it started raining and had to be shifted to  dinning hall.  It was a refreshing and colorful evening . Everybody was completely thrilled. As planned, cocktail was organized followed by dinner. Every body was in hilarious mood with songs and jokes and share their life long experience.   Every member participated and opened up full to their heart. It was a lovely and lively get together.

Next day was 18th morning and every body was in a relaxed mood. Today was the leisure time since our departure for return journey was in the evening and full day was at our disposal. After heavy breakfast, we checked out before  noon. Thereafter we went to down town where we took our lunch in a dhaba.  We also spent some time in the main market and our members fully utilized this time for their left over shopping. We returned to our hotel at 1530 hrs. and picked up our luggage.  We boarded our coach from the bus stand . It was the same Volvo coach, which brought us to Manali. We left Manali at 6 pm. On the way, we made a stopover for dinner at the same Dhaba near Bhuntar, where on 15th morning we managed our brunch.

The return journey was full of sweet memories of past 4 days which we all spent together. It was a unique experience for all to get introduced to new faces and spend this period totally relaxed and care free. The journey terminated at ISBT Kashmiri gate on 19th April morning.

RANJIT SINGH