Amarnath Yatra Resumes As Weather Improves


Srinagar: The annual pilgrimage to the 3,880 metre high cave shrine of Amarnath in south Kashmir Himalayas resumed this morning after remaining suspended for most part of the day yesterday due to heavy rains, officials said.

The yatra resumed this morning with fresh batches comprising over 1800 pilgrims leaving the base camps for the cave shrine, where over 500 pilgrims also offered their prayers till this afternoon, the officials said.

A batch of 429 pilgrims left for the yatra from Jammu. The pilgrims included 32 women and 102 ‘sadhus’. With improvement in weather, the officials said fresh batches of pilgrims were allowed to move towards the cave shrine from the base camps of Baltal in Ganderbal district and Nunwan-Pahalgam in Anantnag district.

While 944 pilgrims preferred the shorter 12-km Baltal route, 896 pilgrims left Nunwan this morning to track the traditional 42-km Pahalgam route to the cave, the officials said.

They said the yatra was going on smoothly from both the routes and so far 525 pilgrims had ‘darshan’ of the naturally formed ice-shivlingam at the cave.

Heavy rains, which lashed wide parts of Kashmir yesterday, rendered the arduous tracks slippery, prompting the authorities to temporarily halt the yatra as a precautionary measure.

The pilgrims, who had reached various halting stations, to and fro the cave were also directed to stay back and wait for further orders.

The 48-day yatra commenced from the twin routes on July 2 and so far over 2.09 lakh pilgrims had paid obeisance at the cave shrine.