Kharpunath the Famous Religious Destination of Humla in Shadow


It is believed that the armpit of Satidevi(Parbati) had fallen here in Kharpunath. Kharpu in local language means armpit, thus the place got it’s name as Kharpunath. It is believed that lord Shiva carried the dead body of Sati Devi and moved around in agony. Her body parts fell apart in different places as he carried it. Locals say the shoulder and armpit part of Satidevi had fallen here along the banks of the Karnali and Changla river.

Kharpunath is located in Kharpunath remote municipality of Humla. “One should visit this place prior to their holi visit to Mansarovar. But due to lack of information flow and poor promotion of this region, hardly anyone knows about it. The most significant religious destination is still in limbo,” informed Hari Bhakta Shahi, the Chairperson of Kharpunath Shivalay Management Committee. “Poor infrastructure development and bad connectivity with other parts of the country has put the pilgrimage sites into shadow,” Shahi added. He is also a health worker by profession and works in the nearby health post. He is mostly found around the temple premises busy with his carving, his another passion. He has carved the wooden doors of the temple along with the ‘nandi'(Holi bull) on a small rock just outside the temple. The concrete temple is build adjoining a natural cave within a small mountain. It is said earlier when the farmers used to burn insense sticks, the smoke would be seen passing out of the mountain top, through the internal hollow channel within. There is a hot water natural pond nearby. Also, there is a small island, which has been connected with a metal bridge now. Kharpunath is located just below the district headquarter Simikot, with a distance of around an hour by road. Generally, people take the local jeeps upon reaching Simikot. One can reach Simikot via Surkhet or Nepalgunj by plane. Many private planes ply the area which are mostly small one.

Humla is the most remote district of Karnali province with China border nearby. Many Indian tourists reach Humla for their Mansarovar tour. Mansarovar lies in Chinese side of Tibet and they come through Nepalgunj from Indian border of Rupaidiha. Airways is the only mode of transportation. At the same time, it is also very expensive as is said one could reach to Thailand with the same charges. That is first problem of the Karnali region, people are forced to travel by plane not because of their interest but due to bad road connectivity. The life expectancy of the people is comparatively lower than others. Mostly people are involved in trade of medicinal herbs, which are mostly exported to China and India for medicinal production. Apple, buckwheat, walnuts, local rice, honey are the famous local productions. The local people are also involved in vegetable production in their greenhouses. Most of the commodities are imported from China and via air from Nepalgunj and Surkhet. Thus, making Karnali expensive than other parts. To conclude there are many beautiful destinations hidden in the remote parts of the Karnali and it is duty of the State and Nepalese to reveal such famous and significant destinations.