Annual Amarnath Yatra ends peacefullyAugust 2nd, 2012 - 3:19 pm ICT by IANS
Srinagar, Aug 2 (IANS) The month-and-a-half annual Amarnath Yatra ended peacefully Thursday after Shravan Purnima prayers at the 13,500 feet high Himalayan cave shrine in south Kashmir.
Jammu and Kashmir Governor N.N. Vohra, who is also chairman of the Shri Amarnath Shrine Board, attended the concluding prayers led by Swami Dipinder Giri, the custodian of the ‘Chhari Mubarak’ (Shiva’s mace).
After an overnight halt at Panchtarni, the Chhari Mubarak arrived at the cave shrine early Thursday.
The end of the yatra coincides with the Hindu festival Raksha Bandhan.
This year over 6.20 lakh pilgrims had a glimpse of the ice stalagmite structure inside the cave which devotees believe symbolizes the mythological powers of Lord Shiva.
A three-tier security was provided to the pilgrimage with the army, paramilitary forces and police forming the security ring.
No separatist attack occurred against the pilgrims this year although the number of pilgrims dying due to natural causes remained a huge concern.
The Supreme Court took a suo moto cognizance of these deaths, passing directions to the central and state governments and also the Board to step up healthcare facilities for the pilgrims.
This year, 95 pilgrims died during the pilgrimage due to natural causes including high altitude sickness triggered pulmonary oedema, brain oedema and cardio-vascular failures.
The victims included 87 pilgrims, two civilians assisting the pilgrims, five sadhus or holy men and a sevadar (volunteer).
In addition, 31 pilgrims died in road accidents and three died of natural causes while staying in local hotels.
The Amarnath Yatra gets the full backing of local Muslims. Hundreds of Muslims work as potters, ponywallahs, roadside tea-stall owners as well as taxi and travel operators.
- Last leg of Amarnath yatra - chhari mubarak leaves Srinagar - Aug 08, 2011
- Around 500,000 perform Amarnath Yatra - Jul 16, 2012
- 12,000 pilgrims arrive for Amarnath Yatra - Jun 24, 2012
- Amarnath pilgrims worship Holy Mace in Srinagar - Aug 19, 2010
- Pilgrims carry Chari Mubarak to Amarnath shrine - Aug 15, 2010
- Amarnath pilgrimage resumes, 26,000 head for shrine - Jul 09, 2011
- 16 Amarnath pilgrims killed as truck falls into gorge (Lead) - Jul 27, 2012
- Sri Amarnath Yatra concludes peacefully - Aug 05, 2009
- 45,000 Amarnath pilgrims treated at medical camps - Jul 30, 2012
- Next year, fitness must for Amarnath pilgrims - Oct 22, 2011
- Preparations begin for Amarnath pilgrimage - Mar 21, 2012
- Amarnath pilgrimage resumes, 20,000 head for shrine (Lead) - Jul 04, 2011
- 600,000 pilgrims perform Amarnath Yatra - Jul 25, 2011
- Unregistered Amarnath pilgrims cause chaos - Jun 28, 2012
- Amarnath shrine had 400,000 pilgrims this year - Aug 04, 2009
Tags: amarnath yatra, cognizance, healthcare facilities, high altitude sickness, hindu festival, holy men, jammu and kashmir, lakh, lord shiva, paramilitary forces, pilgrims, raksha bandhan, road accidents, sadhus, shrine board, south kashmir, state governments, tea stall, travel operators, vohra