A Kolkata-based paranormal research body is set to include more haunted places in its itinerary for curious travellers looking for spirits across the country after hosting the first ghost tour of Begunkodar, a haunted railway station in West Bengal’s Purulia district.
At least 11 people took part in Systematic Paranormal Investigation, Research and Intelligence Team’s tour of the ghost-infested station on July 23. It remained closed for about 40 years after locals allegedly sighted spirits and ghosts until it was reopened in 2009.
“Our first tour of Bengunkodar haunted railway station was a grand success. Now, we plan to add others to the ghost tourism map including Dow Hills in Kurseong, where the area including Victoria Boys High School is said to be haunted... Talks are on with tour operators,” SPIRIT’s Soumen Roy said.
Roy said Bhangarh Fort in Rajasthan and Dulari Bhawan in Jharkhand’s Simultala, two most haunted places in the country, will also be added in the route.
“In Bhangarh Fort, visitors are not allowed after sundown. We are planning a day trip there. The response of our first tour has given us the impetus to take forward the ghost tours pan India,” Roy added.
The tourists went to Durgapur in an air-conditioned bus and continued their journey in cars. On their way to Jhalda, ghost stories were part of the journey. Organisers also briefed them about Begunkodar where the station master’s daughter committed suicide on the tracks following which locals reported seeing ghosts.
After a night stop at Jhalda, the tourists made their way to the railway station only to reach it a few minutes before midnight. They spent almost three hours at the station looking for ghosts and spirits.
“I got the news through the internet and then joined in. If I had been alone I would not have ventured towards such a station. It was an unforgettable adventure for us. This was much different than the usual weekend tours to sea resorts or river or hills,” 38-year-old Avishek Chakraborty said.
For Rahul Nath, who works in a television channel, it was an experience of a lifetime.
“I was always fascinated with ghosts and spirits. Though we actually did not see any spirits but the atmosphere was spooky and we enjoyed a lot. I will definitely be a part of the next tour,” the 34-year-old said.
They even handled sophisticated equipment such as electronic voice phenomena (EVP - a recorder to monitor very low sounds), K-2 metre (to detect electromagnetic fields), infrared cameras use to trace spirits and record voices.
Rules of a ghost tour
* No whispering but talking loudly as whispers get recorded on EVP
* No smoking because it interferes with equipment
* No tapping on shoulders or sudden moves as they spook out already edgy tourists
* No alcohol as it blurs judgement and numbs senses
* No cell phones as their electromagnetic field disturbs equipment