Being an engineering student is not easy. Or at least we like to think that. But one has to agree, the Herculean assignments and the mind numbing work load coupled with tensions about getting placed, cannot be handled by the weak-willed. Coping up really drains us out of any energy that we have. And living in a place with limited scope for enjoyment, life can become duller than a Ram Gopal Verma movie.
But that is no way to live. All of us deserve a little bit of adventure and excitement to brighten up our lives. However getting a decent dose of adventure these days requires something which is as rare as our punctuality, time off. Whatever little free time you get must be utilised in this direction. And we are here to help you with that.
Right here in our backyard lie some of nature’s gems, undisturbed by humanity, that provide an atmosphere so serene, your mind and body are instantly rejuvenated. One such place is ZERO POINT, at the end of the right dyke of the Hirakud Dam.
Imagine a place so peaceful where you can actually hear your own thoughts. A place with so much beauty it is forever etched in your mind. A setting so serene you forget all your worries. Your imagination will be close to what you experience at ZERO POINT.
Pass off the Jagganath temple near Sambalpur University and move towards the Hirakud Dam. Take the route towards Jawahar minar and before the final incline you can see the sign pointing towards the right dyke. Proceed in that direction and take the first left you encounter. You are then moving towards the right dyke. The road is in good condition, and as you move along the twisted path you can encounter the reservoir to your right. It is an amazing view, the enormity of the reservoir leaving you amazed. There is no sign marking Zero Point, it is the place where the reservoir ends and the dyke turns right. You can mark the place by some of the rest-sheds built there.
You can move on the dyke for a little bit more and stop at any point you want. you will have the view of the reservoir on your front and the wilderness to your back. Stop for a moment and appreciate the enormity of the reservoir, and all the hard work our peers put in to create the marvel which is the backbone of all the life flourishing in this area. The view is pretty amazing with the water stretching out to as far you can see and meeting the sky in the distant horizon. The only sounds you hear come from the slow movements of the water and the occasional automobile passing by.
The place breathes tranquillity. It’s as if suddenly someone turned the volume knob down on life, and all activity was paused. The vastness of the clean water and clear skies will absorb you and make you forget all worries. A Pink Floyd playlist is recommended to put you at ease and calm your soul. Read a book, enjoy a candid chat with your buddies, or just laze around, whatever you do you will surely make you feel cheerful. In fact this is the only place where sitting around and doing nothing is justified, and we being experts at that, shouldn’t miss the opportunity.
And if you are the adventurous kind, you can ask around for the small waterfall and trek alongside it. You can get atop a small hill and enjoy the aerial view of the beautiful surroundings. There is a lot of water during the rainy season and you can enjoy a quick dip then. However the trek is dangerous if you are not a good climber and we would recommend you abstaining from that.
Apart from that, you can also visit the Debrigarh sanctuary nearby and witness the beautiful flora and fauna endemic to this place.
So whenever you are sad or bogged down by life, take a quick trip to zero point, which is not more than 10 kms away from the university. The surroundings are a mixture of natural beauty and human endeavour. It is amazing how the place is so near to the town yet cut off from humanity. It leaves everyone with a picture of beauty forever etched in their minds.
Because this is not a Tourism advert, we’ll only tell you this much. The rest you can go and enjoy yourself. And those of you thinking of spending some “private” time there with your girlfriends or boyfriends, remember we found the place first, and we might be there to spoil your fun!!
Do check out the place and enjoy the peacefulness it offers to your body and mind, and remember to do that while the sun is still up.