A trip to Amritsar is incomplete if you fail to witness the daily “Beating the Retreat Ceremony” at the Attari – Wagah border. The touts in Amritsar made this as a tourist destination by attracting the crowds in front of the Jallianwala Bagh junction.
One needs to rush at the earliest to the border to get a comfortable place to sit and watch the ceremony. I too finished my lunch in a hurry and rushed to the border. There is a toll gate that charges Rs.35 both ways.
Managed to reach the border. A massive crowd in the parking-lot.
After parking the car one’s intention will be to rush to reach inside at the earliest. But here comes the security warning that ‘No bags or pouches were allowed inside’.
There will be Sardars on the way setting up tables to keep watching your valuables. Here going back and keeping the bag in the car is time consuming and the same risk there too that if some can break
the windshield and take the valuables. So leaving the bags at the security desk was the best option.
I took my lens out of the camera bag and left the bag to the sardar and proceeded further. Here Men and Women have to follow separate lanes for the security check and then proceed further.
The first view of the Pakistan border after the security check before entering the gallery.
There are separate galleries for men and women. Finally I found a place and sat comfortably.
The women from the crowd were gathered to the center of the parade ground and started the cultural activities with patriotic songs and dance such as ‘Jai Hind’, ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai‘ on Indian side and ‘Pakistan Zindabad‘ on the Pakistani side, the environment is worth witnessing.
Here goes the Delhi – Lahore Bus officially known as officially known as Sada-e-Sarhad jointly operated by the Delhi Transport Corporation and the Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation
The Cheer leading BSF officer comes out with the Flags
The Pakistani stands..
Women were dancing
The ceremony starts with the lady jawans marching towards the border gates
The lady jawans at their places infront of the closed gates.
Now is the turn of the men – jawans in full glory!
The gates are about to open
Yes, the gates are open now!
The flags are in full regal display – there is a moment of immense pride!
The flag is brought down slowly!
The lady jawans return back
The flag is folded and brought back by the jawans with full respect.
The gates were closed
Both the flags are down
The crowd disperses with a patriotic feel which marks the end of the whole ceremony. As as I returned, my heart was full of praise for the jawans who battle for the nation; protecting our borders. For many of us the only bit of patriotism is when a cricket or hockey match plays. These are the soldiers – men and women who fight for our safety! Jai Hind!!!!
With this my My travel to Punjab ends and I returned to chennai.
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