Nathula Pass, Changu Lake and  Baba Mandir

NATHULA PASS :

Nathula pass is a mountain pass in the Himalayas. It connects the Indian state of Sikkim with China's Tibet Autonomous Region. The pass, at 4,310 m (14,140 ft) above mean sea level, forms a part of an offshoot of the ancient Silk Road. Nathu means "listening ears" and La means "pass" in Tibetan. On the Indian side, the pass is 54 km (34 mi) east of Gangtok, the capital of Indian state of Sikkim on JN Marg and only citizens of India can visit the pass, that too after obtaining a permit in Gangtok.
Nathu La is one of the three open trading border posts between China and India; the other two are Shipkila in Himachal Pradesh and Lipulekh (or Lipulech) in Uttarakhand. Sealed by India after the 1962 Sino-Indian War, Nathu La was re-opened in 2006 following numerous bilateral trade agreements. The opening of the pass was expected to bolster the economy of the region and play a key role in the growing Sino-Indian trade but that has not happened. Currently, agreements between the two nations limit trade across the pass to 29 types of goods from India and 15 from the Chinese side. The opening also shortens the travel distance to important Hindu and Buddhist pilgrimage sites in the region.

 

CHANGU LAKE :

Tsongmo Lake or Changu Lake is a glacial lake in the East Sikkim, India, some 40 kilometres (25 mi) away from Gangtok at altitude of 3,780 m (12,400 ft). songmo Lake or Changu Lake is a glacial lake in the East Sikkim, India, some 40 kilometres away from Gangtok at altitude of 3,780 m. The road to Nathu La passes the lake on north side.
Changu Lake also called "Tsongmo Lake"  means "source of lake" is a lake situated  around 35 - 40 km away from Gangtok, the capital of Sikkim.  It is a natural lake on top of mountains. It is 3780 meter (12400 feet) above see level and oval in shape, 1 Km long and fifteen meeter deep. The lake freezes during the winter months. Best time to visit is Mid May to August.

 

BABA MANDIR :

Major "Baba" Harbhajan Singh (August 3, 1941 September 11, 1967) was an Indian army soldier who died near the Nathula Pass in eastern Sikkim, India. He is revered by soldiers of the Indian army as the "Hero of Nathula" and the army men have also built a shrine in his honour. He has been accorded the status of saint by believers who refer to him as the Baba (saintly father). Many of the faithful people, chiefly Indian army personnel posted in and around the Nathula Pass and the Sino-Indian border between the sate of Sikkim and Chinese occupied Tibet have come to believe his spirit protects every soldier in the inhospitable high altitude terrain of the Eastern Himalayas. As with most saints, the Baba is said to also grant favours presumably to those who revere and worship him.

 

Life and military career: Baba Harbhajan Singh born into a Sikh family on August 3, 1941 in the village of Batthe Bhaini in Punjab (India). He completed his preliminary schooling in a village school, and then did his matriculation from DAV High School in Patti in March 1955. In June 1956 he enrolled himself as a soldier in Amritsar and joined the Corps of Signals. On June 30, 1965 was granted a commission and posted to the 14 Rajput regiment.

During the 1965 Indo-Pakistan war he served as an Adjutant of his unit. Later he was transferred to 18 Rajput. It was with this regiment that he met his end on September 11, 1967 in Sikkim .