Won’t react to Omar’s statement, will restore peace & prosperity to J&K: LG

Lt Governor Manoj Sinha laying the foundation stone of pilgrimage house of Shri Amarnath Shrine Board in Jammu on Monday. (UNI)
Lt Governor Manoj Sinha laying the foundation stone of pilgrimage house of Shri Amarnath Shrine Board in Jammu on Monday. (UNI)

Govt mulls Ropeway to Shri Amarnath Ji shrine
New Tourist Circuit in Jammu region

Sanjeev Pargal

JAMMU, Nov 29: Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha said today that construction of a ropeway at holy cave shrine of Baba Amarnath Ji is under consideration of the Government and further process will depend on receipt of feasibility report even as he announced that work was on at tourist circuit in Jammu linking holy cave shrine of Mata Vaishno Devi Ji with Purmandal, Utterbehni, Mansar, Surinsar and Shiv Khori.
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of foundation stone laying ceremony of Tirath Yatri Niwas and Disaster Management Centre of SASB here this morning, Sinha declined to comment on the reported statement of former Chief Minister and National Conference vice president Omar Abdullah that militancy is on rise and more local youth are becoming militants in Kashmir. Click here to watch video
“Jammu and Kashmir administration is not working for some people. It is working for common man to provide them increased facilities,” Sinha said, adding that the Government is committed to ensure return of complete peace and prosperity in J&K.
He said the Government wants that youth get employment…they get facilities…industry comes here and J&K becomes prosperous.
The Lieutenant Governor said he along with Chief Secretary (Dr Arun Kumar Mehta) have discussed a proposal for construction of ropeway to cave shrine of Shri Amarnath Ji.
“We have sought a feasibility report. When it comes, we will take further steps,” he said.
It may be mentioned here that many organizations as well as people have been demanding construction of ropeway for Shri Amarnath Ji shrine which will not only reduce travel time sharply but also ensure that pilgrimage is not disrupted due to snowfall and landslides.
Presently, a ropeway is operational between Mata Vaishno Devi Ji Bhawan to Bhairon Ghati and it is running successfully.
Besides, Sinha said, more public utilities will be generated on Shri Amarnath Ji yatra track and existing arrangements will be enhanced.
Addressing the gathering after laying foundation stone of the Tirath Yatri Niwas and Disaster Management Centre, Sinha said work is on at new tourist circuit from Mata Vaishno Devi Ji shrine to Purmandal, Utterbehni, Mansar, Surinsar and Shiv Khori.
“This will lead to economic development and give easy access to tourists to visit this places,” he added.
He said if the figures of tourists visiting Jammu and Kashmir are taken into account, they visited Mata Vaishno Devi shrine and Kashmir while number of the tourists visiting Jammu is less.
“The Government wants this number to go up,” he added.
The Lieutenant Governor announced that a Bhawan with capacity of accommodation of 3200 pilgrims will be ready at Chanderkoot near Ramban on Jammu-Srinagar National Highway when this year’s pilgrimage starts.
“On August 6 this year, we laid foundation stone of another such accommodation at Srinagar for 2800 yatris at Srinagar. The Detailed Project Report (DPR) is ready and we have received Rs 12 crore for its construction. The Project will cost Rs 32 crore and work on it will start after winter with completion timeline of 16 months,” he said.
Sinha said though this year the annual pilgrimage to holy cave shrine of Shri Amarnath Ji in South Kashmir Himalayas couldn’t take place due to COVID pandemic but all rituals were performed and virtual puja was held for the desiring pilgrims.
“Prasad was delivered at home,” he added.
It may be mentioned here that pilgrimage to Shri Amarnath Ji shrine was cut short in 2019 ahead of Central Government’s August 5 decisions to withdraw special status of erstwhile State of Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcate it into two Union Territories of J&K and Ladakh.
In 2020 and 2021, the pilgrimage to Shri Amarnath Ji shrine was cancelled in view of COVID pandemic but the rituals were performed and ‘Chhari Mubarak’ was taken to the shrine.
He said there was a feeling among people in various parts of the country that the yatra is not safe.
“All of us need to work towards ensuring that the people living across India feel that Amarnath Yatra is as safe as any other pilgrimage in the country. We are working in that direction,” he said.
On the new accommodation facility, he said the Delhi School of Architecture will prepare the design within two months and expressed hope that the work will be completed within a year.
He said that the Jindal Foundation has done a survey for improving facilities at Shiv Khori shrine in Reasi district. “We hope the work will start next month,” he added.