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BHUNTAR, HIMACHAL, INDIA
Monday, September 25, 2017
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The holy city of Varanasi.

The historic city of Varanasi, Uttarpradesh, India.

The religious capital of India.

For Aman Chotani, a professional photographer based out of Noida, Uttar Pradesh, India, Varanasi turned out to be one of the most photogenic locations ever encountered.

Ponies for the road.

Sure footed and sturdy, tough mountain ponies transport pilgrims up and down the 12 Km stretch at Vaishno Devi.

The Pithu.

Worked by two to four man teams, palanquins or locally the Pithu lets pilgrims go up and down the 12 stretch at Vaishno Devi like the nobility of old.

Sleepers for Katra.

Managed by private companies, the Delhi to Katra sleeper bus service transports passengers and pilgrims from Delhi to Katra in Jammu & Kashmir and back on a regular basis. But what is the bus and service like?

Help yourself out.

When opting for a bus for visiting the Vaishno Devi in Katra, Jammu and Kashmir, India, things you might want to keep in mind, instead of relying blindly on your booking agent.

The Pilgrim Road.

In the 12th century A.D, Pandit Shridhar clambered up a rough mountain trail of the Trikuta mountain to reach the holy cave of the Vaishnodevi. Now pilgrims from across the country make the journey up on a well paved road with refreshment stalls and benches almost all the way to the top.

What men could do, Yarghu could do better.

Based on the drawings of a 15th century Iranian inventor, the Yarghu, at the National Science Centre, is a Mughal era cannon cleaner with no similar contraption existing anywhere else in the world.

Roasted or skinned, how do you like your lizard?

Visitors often fail to spot this little critter scurrying along the forest floor, when scouring tree tops for birds at the Keoldeao National Park. A respite the Bengal monitor doesn't seem to mind.

How safe is that fresh lemon soda?

Packaged beverages and factory sealed water bottles are a far safer option in a country with a dangerous level of water contamination. But on this hot summer day, that fresh lemon soda looks inciting. Should you or should you not go for it.