After a gap of 2 years, Amarnath Yatra begins today

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Jammu: The 43-day long Amarnath Yatra to the holy cave shrine located in south Kashmir Himalayas began today amid chants of ‘Har Har Mahadev’ from both Baltal and Nunwan base camps in Kashmir valley. Deputy Commissioner Piyush Singla flagged off the first batch of 2,750 pilgrims from the Nunwan base camp in the Anantnag district’s Pahalgam.

Pahalgam is the traditional route for the Amarnath Pilgrimage. The first batch going through this route is expected to reach the holy cave shrine by tomorrow.

Another batch of pilgrims left for holy cave from base camp Baltal in Sonmarg. Those pilgrims left from Baltal will reach holy cave today afternoon and will pay their obesiance to the holy cave. Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha will perform the first ritual at the Holy Cave today morning after which gates of holy cave will be thrown open for pilgrims.

All arrangements have been put in place by the Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB) to ensure smooth pilgrimage to the naturally formed ice-lingam at the cave shrine, officials said.

The journey, most of it on foot, takes about three days with night halts at Sheeshnag and Panchtarni along the route. The yatra began with religious fervour after a gap of three years.

This year, the pilgrimage is expected to see higher than usual attendance of pilgrims as the Yatra is resuming after a gap of three years. In 2019, the Yatra was curtailed days ahead the abrogation of Article 370. The pilgrimage did not take place in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

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