Coastal trekking at the twilight of life journey

Kendrapara: They may be in the twilight of life, but advancing age did not deter them from taking on adventurous coastal trekking.

Imbibed with youthful exuberance, a group of elders from West Bengal have undertaken beach trekking on 126 km long Paradip-Puri coastline. "Our purpose is to explore the beauty of the beach off Odisha coast. We also want to have a look at the beach erosion and the extent of effluent discharge into seawaters," Tapan Bhatacharya, a member of the trekking team, said.

"To get out of the boredom of retired life, we have begun this coastal trekking. We have set a target to cover the whole of coastline off Bay of Bengal coast. Our motto is to create awareness on conservation of beach. We had heard a lot about the pristine beauty of Odisha beach. It has attracted us to Paradip to take on the beach trekking," he said.

"The trekkers represent West Bengal Mountaineers and Trekking Confederation, an organisation recognised by the state government. As the trekkers would cover mostly unmanned and isolated areas, we have made arrangement to ensure their safety. The Paradip Coast Guard has provided them escorts on our request, " Surajeet Das, Additional District Magistrate of Paradip, said.

"We have met a cross-section of people mostly from fishermen along the route. There is a lot of similarity in the culture and lifestyle of people of both states. We felt as if we were moving in the home-turf. The beaches that we have trekked are largely free from pollution," Haradhan Mukherji, a member of the trekking team, said.