The first batch of Amarnath Yatris has left for the holy cave of Baba Barfani from Jammu. Deputy Governor and Chairman of Amarnath Shrine Board Manoj Sinha flagged off the first batch after offering prayers at around 4.15 am on Friday. During this, the base camp was completely painted in the colours of Bhole. Devotees started the journey by chanting Bhole.
A convoy of vehicles was dispatched to Kashmir amid tight security. On Thursday, the first batch of pilgrims reached Bhagwati Nagar, the base camp in Jammu. For the first time, helmets are being given to avoid stones while passing through landslide-prone places during the yatra. Devotees will proceed to the holy cave on Saturday via the traditional Baltal and Pahalgam route. The batch going from the Baltal route will return on Saturday itself after visiting Himling.
At the same time, till Thursday, more than 1600 pilgrims had reached the Bhagwati Nagar base camp for the journey from across the country. A cultural program was also organized for them in the evening. From Lakhanpur, the gateway to Kashmir, the atmosphere has become Shivamay. The administration has also issued cut-off timings for commuters on the Jammu-Srinagar highway.
Accordingly, vehicles other than Amarnath Yatris will be released. This step has been taken for the safety of passengers and to avoid the problem of jams. According to the schedule of the tourism department, the batch will be welcomed at Tikri, Chandrakot and other places in Udhampur. During the departure of the batch, the movement of common vehicles will remain closed on the Yatra route.
A large number of devotees reached Saraswati Dham near Railway Station Jammu in the early hours of Thursday for immediate registration. Here 2189 tokens were issued for the Baltal route, while for the Pahalgam route, it has been said to issue tokens on Friday. 141 passengers were immediately registered after the token at Vaishnavi Dham, located near the railway station.