Often referred to as a ‘delicious land of mystery’, India has many untold stories, secrets and darkness hidden in every nook and corner of this enthralling land which has lured travelers and backpackers worldwide from time immemorial! National parks and sanctuaries of India have attracted wildlife enthusiasts and photographers time and again from various parts of the globe. Besides conserving the rich biodiversity of the land, national parks also add economic value, physical and emotional well-being as well as social and cultural impact on nature and humans. Having said that, there are a handful of national parks in India which have a slight twist of mystery attached to them. If you’re curious to know more, then keep reading, as today we’re going to discuss national parks in India which have an ‘ill repute’ of being haunted! Thrilled? Well, in my previous post ‘Is Dumas Beach Really Haunted?,’ I discussed about a beach that fascinated ghost hunters and inquisitive travelers over and over again to unravel the unknown. In this post, I’ll focus on two national parks and their unsolved unnatural phenomena –
Balpakram National Park – Shrouded in Mystery!
To start with, Balpakram National Park which is situated in Meghalaya, the land of enigmatic beauty attracts many travelers every year! Locally known as ‘the land of spirits’, this park received the status and became a national park in the year 1987. Situated 3000 feet above the sea level, this land of immense natural beauty is a tableland nestled amid thick foliage. Spread across 200 sq. kms. of land, Balpakram is tucked in the southeastern fringes of Garo Hills. Besides the wide array of exotic plants and animals, this national park has few inexplicable facts that modern science and logic has failed to resolve till date.
The ‘Forest Man’
Garos, the local inhabitants of this ‘land of perpetual winds,’ consider Balpakram as a place where the spirits of the dead reside. Gonchos, as the locals call the evil spirits, are believed to exist in the steep rock cliffs of canyon-cum-gorge inside the national park. In addition, the park has an unsolved story of ‘forest man’ or commonly referred as the ‘Yeti’. Alastair Lawson, BBC reporter along with Dipu Marak who happens to be a passionate Yeti believer discovered few strong imprints of an ape-like creature all across the region in 2008. Locally known as Mande Barung, this place showed compelling evidence of a 10 feet tall ape-like animal form of approximately 300 kgs of weight surviving on wild fruits, tree bark, and roots. Nelbison Sangma who happens to be a local wood cutter in and around Garo Hills claims to have seen this weird creature in 2003 as he says “I saw the creature quite clearly on the other side of the river. It was breaking branches off trees and eating the sap. Its strength was amazing. Obviously, I wanted to photograph it, but I knew that if I left the area, it would take at least 10 hours or more to get a camera as I do not own one. By that time the creature would have disappeared”.
A Place Where Secrecy Beckons!
Moreover, few startling facts make Balpakram a must visit site for the ones who get an adrenaline rush from hearing the word ‘paranormal’. Matchru Anti, is a mysterious place in the middle of this plateau where animal footprints are seen on specific rocks. Locals believe that this place was once an animal market which no longer exists in the current context. The strangest part is that only few rocks have those imprints whereas others are absolutely clean and perfect. Areng Patal, a huge gorge like hollow somewhere in the national park attracting animals and birds wherefrom they fail to return is another unsolved mystery of this park. However, this unexplained phenomenon hasn’t affected any human so far. A small stream 1 km away from the park, popularly named as Wakso Chiring is believed to be cursed by the spirit of Wakmangganchi aragondi, a demon. As a result, anyone getting closer to the stream can find foul smell coming out of it.
Sanjay Gandhi National Park – Dare to Visit After the Sun Goes Down?
The next in our discussion, Sanjay Gandhi National Park is situated in North Mumbai and is quite a well- known national park in Maharashtra. Acting literally like oxygen to the city of bricks, this national park is an impressive getaway for majority of the Mumbaikars on weekends who love to spend some time with nature and animals. Amid nature and wildlife, Sanjay Gandhi National Park always gets a mention as one of the scariest places in India. What’s the real story? Let’s dig into the matter…
People avoid this area from evening onwards. It’s generally being considered that a female ghost haunts this area after dark. This unexplained incident has been confirmed by many visitors and park guards. All dressed in white, as explained by the locals and night guards, this female ghost asks for a lift from different bikers and car drivers who were never found thereon. People have also heard her creepy laugh behind when they didn’t stop their cars or bikes. Ghoststoriesworld.com, an archive of true ghost stories across the globe confirms that this spirit belonged to a woman who wasn’t mentally stable and lost her life due to some mishap following which the place has become haunted by her apparition. Series of different uncanny incidents and loss of lives compelled the park authority to clear the crowd post evening. No one is allowed to stay inside the park late evening to avoid unprecedented happenings.
Tell Us Your Story…
We may believe these stories or may not but there are many incidents in our lives which at times can even make the most logical mind a bit perplexed. Do you have anything of that sort to share that made you believe in the arcane in spite of being a hardcore pragmatic? Would love to hear from you. Do share your ideas, thoughts and comments below! We’re never asleep 🙂