Heavy rain, snow casts shadow over Amarnath pilgrimageJune 14th, 2009 - 12:32 pm ICT by IANS
Jammu/Srinagar, June 14 (IANS) A day before the annual Hindu pilgrimage to the cave shrine of Amarnath in Jammu and Kashmir begins, the weather gods turned whimsical, lashing the region with continuous rain and snowfall Sunday.
The entire journey stretch of more than 350 km from Jammu to the cave shrine, located at the height of 13,500 feet above sea level, in Himalayas in south Kashmir, was overcast with rain at many places, raising doubts about the safety of the pilgrims.
The Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB), that manages the pilgrimage to the shrine, has announced the start of the yatra through the shorter route of Baltal. The revered shrine has an icon of Lord Shiva in the form of a naturally made ice stalagmite, called Shivlingam.
The inclement weather is causing worry about the pilgrimage.
“We are hoping that the yatra would start tomorrow (Monday) and the weather gods would be kind to us and the pilgrims,” said a SASB official, as he voiced worry over the “continuous rains and snowfall around the shrine”.
“The most important thing for us is the safety of the pilgrims,” the officer said.
The SASB has issued a strict advisory to pilgrims to wear only trousers, not saris or dhotis, during the pilgrimage that involves trekking on the Himalayan heights that are slippery and slushy.
Pilgrims have also been advised to carry with them umbrellas, torches, walking sticks, woollen clothing, and vital medicines. The elderly and children have been asked to “rethink” about their journey plans.
The pilgrimage route passes through the landslide areas and the trekking path from Baltal to the shrine is also prone to slides.
- Unregistered Amarnath pilgrims cause chaos - Jun 28, 2012
- Amarnath pilgrims court risks for a glimpse of Shiva - Jul 04, 2011
- Thousands reach Kashmir base camps for Amarnath Yatra (Second Lead) - Jun 28, 2011
- Thousands trek to Amarnath cave for prayers (Lead) - Jun 29, 2011
- Bad weather hampering efforts to clear Amarnath route - May 27, 2012
- Annual Amarnath yatra begins (Lead) - Jun 24, 2012
- 600,000 pilgrims perform Amarnath Yatra - Jul 25, 2011
- Home ministry reviews situation ahead of Amarnath Yatra - Jun 11, 2012
- Amarnath pilgrimage: First prayers offered, but not at shrine - Jun 15, 2011
- Amarnath pilgrimage begins Monday despite bad weather (Lead) - Jun 14, 2009
- 100 post offices to register for Amarnath yatra: SASB - Apr 30, 2012
- Pilgrims cannot start Amarnath Yatra before June 25 - Jun 23, 2012
- Preparations for 2012 Amarnath pilgrimage begin - Oct 16, 2011
- Governor reviews Amarnath pilgrimage facilities - Jul 17, 2012
- Differences sharpen between Amarnath board, religious groups - May 12, 2012
Tags: amarnath shrine, continuous rain, feet above sea level, heavy rain, hindu pilgrimage, inclement weather, jammu and kashmir, landslide areas, lord shiva, pilgrimage route, pilgrims, rain snow, sasb, shri, shrine board, south kashmir, srinagar, walking sticks, weather gods, yatra