Yatra suspended from Baltal track; 6114 pilgrims perform darshan

An Amarnath yatri being taken to Cave Shrine in a ‘palki’. -Excelsior/Sajjad Dar
An Amarnath yatri being taken to Cave Shrine in a ‘palki’. -Excelsior/Sajjad Dar

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, July 19: As many as 6114 pilgrims today performed darshan at holy cave shrine of Shri Amarnath Ji in South Kashmir Himalayas taking total yatra to 2.38 lakh even as a pilgrim from Madhya Pradesh died of cardiac arrest at the cave shrine.
Official sources told the Excelsior that out of 6114 yatris, who paid obeisance to Lord Shiva at Shri Amarnath Ji shrine today, 4248 were Male, 1653 Female, 128 security personnel and 83 Sadhus.
Number of the pilgrims offering prayers at the shrine today was less as yatra was suspended from shorter Baltal track this morning due to rains and slippery conditions on the track. However, yatra on Pahalgam-Chandanwari track continued after a brief halt as weather was almost fine on that track.
Authorities will take a decision on resumption of yatra on Baltal track early tomorrow morning depending upon the weather conditions.
A total of 2,38,974 pilgrims have so far performed darshan of naturally formed holy Ice Lingam of Lord Shiva since start of annual yatra on July 1. The yatra will last 46 days and culminate on August 15 coinciding with Shravan Purnima and Raksha Bandhan.
Meanwhile, a 59-year old pilgrim from Madhya Pradesh died today due to massive cardiac arrest at the cave shrine.
He has been identified as Abehey Jig, a resident of Madhya Pradesh. He was shifted to the Medical Camp, where he breathed his last. His body has been flown to Baltal base camp for further transportation to his native town.
In the morning, initially yatra was also suspended on traditional Nunwan-Pahalgam-Chandanwari track. However, pilgrimage on this track was restored following improvement in weather conditions.
As weather improved, large number of pilgrims left Nunwan for Chandanwari, the last motorable track point from where they started their onward journey to the cave shrine.
The yatra was progressing smoothly on the traditional track, reports said.
Meanwhile, a fresh batch of 3627 pilgrims on Friday left for Shri Amarnath cave shrine in South of Himalayas amid “Bum Bum Bhole” chants and rains from Yatri Niwas, Bhagwati Nagar base camp here.
The fleet of 157 vehicles ferrying pilgrims was escorted by CRPF personnel in jeeps and on motorbikes.
For Pahalgam route, 1799 male, 300 female, three children, 112 Sadhus and two transgender left the base camp in 92 vehicles and for Baltal, 1012 male and 399 females left in 65 vehicles including buses and LMVs.
Total 157 vehicles left the base camp for both the routes including 63 HMVs and 94 LMVs.
Multi-tier security arrangements have been made for smooth and successful conduct of 46-day long Yatra.