First batch of Shri Amarnath Yatra flagged off from Jammu, J&K
Jammu, June 27- The annual Shri Amarnath Yatra today started as the first batch of pilgrims left for the Holy Cave Shrine in South Kashmir Himalayas from the base-camp here amid tight security arrangements.
Minister for Tourism flagged off first batch consisting of 3157 pilgrims from Jammu base camp Yatri Niwas, Bhagwati Nagar at 5 a.m.in the morning.
While interacting with the devotees and media, the Minister said that sufficient arrangements have been made for smooth conduct of the Shri Amarnath Yatra and administration is fully geared up to provide facilities like accommodation, drinking water, electricity etc to the yatris at base camps and enroute.
Praying for smooth and safe yatra, the minister said the pilgrims have to brave tough and inclement weather conditions during the yatra also to avoid an outward incident. Only registered and medically fit yatris would be allowed to undertake the pilgrimage.
Directing all concerned departments to ensure foolproof Yatra related arrangements, the Minister passed instructions for ensuring best possible facilities in order to make the pilgrimage a pleasant experience for the devotees. He said all required assistance would be provided to the yatris to help them cope with the bad weather, difficult terrain and mountainous tracks.
First batch of pilgrims included 2466 males, 563 females, 37 children and 91 sadhus, that left in 96 vehicles including 75 buses and 21 Light motor vehicles (LMVs) amid tight mobile security escort.
Enchanting religious slogans, hymns and prayers, the pilgrims with holy bandannas tied to their fore-heads left for the Valley amid joy and happiness for their onward journey to Shri Amarnath Cave Shrine.
MLA Jammu East, Divisional Commissioner, Jammu, Inspector General Police, Jammu, DIG Jammu Kathua Range, District Development Commissioner, Director Tourism Jammu and other senior officers of Tourism, Police, and other concerned department were present at the flag off ceremony.