500 passengers will be allowed daily for Amarnath Yatra


New Delhi: Emphasizing that the upcoming annual Amarnath Yatra should be conducted in a limited manner in view of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Jammu and Kashmir administration said on Saturday that only 500 passengers would be allowed daily to visit the holy cave at 3,880 meters by road. Along with this, Amarnath Aarti will be telecast live on Doordarshan this year. The administration said that the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) of the investigation conducted during the entry into the union territory will also be applicable to the Amarnath pilgrims.

Chief Secretary BVR Subramaniam said that this year the yatra will be carried out in a limited manner to ensure strict compliance of Covid-19 standard operating procedures during the yatra. A maximum of 500 passengers will be allowed daily by road from Jammu. He was presiding over the meeting of the sub-committee constituted by the Supreme Court for the visit here. The two-day journey from Pahalgam in Anantnag and Baltal in Ganderbal for 42 days was scheduled to begin on June 23 but was delayed due to the epidemic.

Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB) is planning to conduct the yatra for a brief period of 15 days in the last week of July. During the review of the preparations for the Yatra 2020, the Chief Secretary said that the State Executive Committee constituted under the Disaster Management Act in the wake of the Kovid-19 epidemic has issued standard operating procedures and under it for 100% people coming to Jammu and Kashmir RTPCR investigation to be done. He said that all the people coming to Jammu and Kashmir will be tested by taking samples and they will remain in isolation till their reports do not confirm the infection.

Financial Commissioner of the Health Department, Atal Dullo also spoke in the context of health care. He said that adequate arrangements for medicines, PPE kits, masks, sleeping bags, and other consumption items are being made for the doctors and paramedical personnel posted on travel duty. Dullo said that two base hospitals are also being set up on Baltal Marg.