JAMMU, Feb 4: A Yatri Niwas being constructed by Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB) at Chanderkote in Ramban district is near completion and will be put to use by the pilgrims during the pilgrimage this year.
Official sources said that the project was conceived on March 19, 2019 and proposal was immediately forwarded for transfer of land to Shri Amarnath Ji Shrine Board. The work on the project was started in the month of May last year by Central Power Works Department (CPWD).
The Yatri Niwas complex having 17 dormitories with a bed capacity of over 3600 will be ready shortly as work is apace at present and this would provide much-needed accommodation facility to the pilgrims.
The complex is being constructed by the Central Power Works Department (CPWD) at a cost of Rs 32.16 crore on about 24 kanals of land on the bank of River Chenab near Baghlihar Hydroelectric Project. The Yatri Niwas will have seventeen 3 storey (G+2) dormitories made of pre-fabricated engineering structures.
As many as 3600 pilgrims will be able to stay at a time in this Yatri Niwas in case of need or any emergency, sources said, adding that it will not only lessen the burden on the Yatri Niwas at Bhagwati Nagar in Jammu but also help in sheltering the stranded passengers in case of blockage of the Jammu Srinagar National Highway.
Till date, the district administration was adjusting the stranded passengers in schools, religious places, shelter sheds etc.
Stating that progress on the project is being constantly monitored by the Deputy Commissioner Ramban Mussarat Islam, sources said that CPWD has already been told to expedite construction work so that Yatri Niwas is ready within the stipulated time-frame. Modalities have also been discussed with the Executive Engineer of Jal Shakti Department for executing the water supply plan which was approved for providing adequate water supply to Yatri Niwas.
Additional Deputy Commissioner Harbans Lal has specifically been asked by the administration to visit the project site regularly so that hurdle if any is removed well in time. It is expected that Yatri Niwas will be thrown open for the pilgrims in case Government takes decision about allowing Amarnath Yatra this year.
The project has also generated employment for the locals as majority of the workforce has been taken from different parts of Ramban.