One year passed since Shiva left his house to roam all over India by foot with an almost 30 kilogram weighing backpack. He carries only essential clothes, a sheet for a tent and stove with a tiny gas cylinder on his bag. The 27-year-old Shiva Kalarikkal’s travels continue by challenging harsh weather conditions and financial constraints.
By showing his withered shoes, rugged clothes and bag, Shiva said that his journey might seem indigent for many. Nevertheless, he considers it a luxurious one. “I am exploring my India by foot. I am able to experience different lands, lives and cultures. How can this journey be poor?” he asked.
Shiva had planned for an eight-month long trip. His parents are no more and the sisters are living with their families after marriage. Shiva was all alone in his house in Areeckal. He set off his journey via Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. He covered Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Nepal, Sikkim, Bhutan, West Bengal, Odisha, Jharkhand, and Bihar. Later, he returned to Uttar Pradesh to proceed his journey to Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh. Shiva has reached Kullu Manali, the valley of Gods, to celebrate Dussehra there.
Shiva said that he received the most warm welcome in Nepal, Sikkim and West Bengal. “Even the people residing in small residences offered me food and shelter. However, in certain places people threatened and drove me away. Some attempted to snatch my purse and phone. During travel also one can witness highs and lows as in life,” said Shiva.
Shiva plans to return after visiting Leh Ladak, Khardung La, Jammu and Kashmir. It will take at least 6 months to reach Kerala, said Shiva. Whenever he ran out of funds, he rang his friends up in the Young Voice Cultural Centre, who helped him in his needs.
Shiva, who wishes to write scripts for movies, now desires to note down his experiences during the journeys. He had pursued a film making course at Nova Institute in Ernakulam. He had played a minor role in the Fahad Faasil movie ‘Trans’.
Shiva’s next endeavour is a bicycle trip named ‘To Know Kerala’, and create a video-photo album to record Kerala’s achievements and current positions in different sectors.