Srinagar: The annual Amarnath Yatra, which began from the Baltal route in north Kashmir on June 28, will also start from its traditional Pahalgam route on Wednesday, the shrine board announced.
"At a high level meeting, chaired by Governor N.N. Vohra at Raj Bhavan today (Monday), it was decided that the Pahalgam-Chandanwari route shall be opened for the Amarnathji Yatra on Wednesday, July 2," said a statement issued by the Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB).
Jammu and Kashmir police chief K. Rajendra, SASB CEO R.K. Gupta, Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Shailendra Kumar, Inspector General of Police, Kashmir, A. G. Mir and additional CEO, SASB, Preet Pal Singh were present at the meeting .
"The governor, who is also the chairman of the SASB, was briefed by the CEO about the Yatra related arrangements along the Pahalgam route, track condition from Sheshnag to Panjtarni, and status of snow clearance at the site of the Sheshnag Camp. In view of the snow melt levels in the past four days, it was decided to open the Pahalgam route for the pilgrims from July 2.
"For the convenience of pilgrims, it was decided that all Yatris who have already obtained registration to travel on the Pahalgam route (in south Kashmir) till July 5 shall, if they so wish, have the option of travelling via the Baltal route on the date for which they possess valid registration.
"Thereafter, from July 6 onwards, the Yatris will be allowed to embark on their pilgrimages only as per the specific date and route for which they possess valid Yatra Permits," said the statement.
It said that the SASB CEO was asked to forthwith commence the facility of on-the-spot registration of pilgrims who wish to travel by the Pahalgam route.
"Such registration will be open for the pilgrims to embark on their yatra via the Pahalgam route only with effect from July 6. This registration would be done at the registration counters which have already been set-up by the SASB at Jammu and Srinagar," it said, adding the facility for on-the-spot registration via the Baltal route has already been opened with effect from June 28.
So far, 14,635 people have performed the Yatra that started on June 28 via the Baltal route in Ganderbal district.