More than 150,000 register for Amarnath pilgrimage

May 22nd, 2011 - 5:57 pm ICT by IANS  

Amarnath Shrine Jammu, May 22 (IANS) There has been an overwhelming response to the annual Amarnath “yatra” (pilgrimage) this year, with more than 150,000 having registered themselves in the 12 days since registration began May 10, officials said Sunday.

“Registration of pilgrims has been progressing steadily since May 10 and all the designated bank branches are witnessing a heavy rush for registration. On an average during the past 12 days, over 12,500 yatris have been availing the registration facility every day,” said R.K.Goyal, the chief executive officer of the Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB).

Of 150,961 pilgims registered so far, 78,287 have opted for the traditional Pahalgam route and 72,674 have secured registration for the Baltal route, he added.

The pilgrimage is scheduled to start on June 29 and will conclude on Aug 13.

The annual Amarnath Yatra is an important part of the Hindu pilgrimage calendar. Thousands take part in the trek, organised by the state government, to the 14,000-foot high Amarnath Cave, dedicated to Lord Shiva, in south Kashmir.

Pilgrims come to worship a snow stalagmite in the cave shrine that is believed to be an embodiment of the deity.

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