The annual Amarnath Yatra commenced on July 1 this year with hundreds of pilgrims reaching their base camps at Sonamarg and Baltal in Ganderbal district of Central Kashmir. The pilgrims use various modes of transport to reach the base camps as they move further towards the Amarnath cave shrine that is located at the height of 13,500 feet from the sea level.
Tight security has been arranged along the twin routes of Baital and Pahalgam to ensure smooth conduct of this 40-day Amarnath Yatra. The trio of the Army, the Jammu and Kashmir Police and the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) have been given the task of providing security through the multi-tier security arrangement.
Optimum Use Of Latest Technologies And Gadgets
The security forces have been ordered to make optimum use of the latest technologies and gadgets to ensure that the pilgrims carry on with their Yatra in a secure way. For that, the forces have already started sanitizing the routes. The security measures have been tightened than usual post the Pulwama attack incidence that killed 40 CRPF jawans.
Union Home Minister Amith Shah is personally in contact with the security heads and warned the officials that any complacency in the arrangements will not be tolerated. He ordered them to implement the standard procedures of operations for the pilgrimage very strictly. Shah was on a two-day visit to the Jammu and Kashmir valley and underlined the significance of implementing the standard operating procedures for a convoy movement.
Shah said the security personnel should erect barricades at suitable locations after the cut-off timings without making any differentiation between the tourists and the pilgrims.
Advisors To Governor Take Stock Of Security Arrangements
Advisors to the Governor of the state, Khursheed Ahmad Ganai and KK Sharma personally paid a visit to the Baltal and Nunwan (Pahalgam) base camps and chaired high-level meetings with the in-charge security officials. They took stock of the entire security arrangements. The two advisors also took a review of the ongoing work to upgrade track on the Baltal route up to the Amarnath cave.
These include improvements at the access control gates, shelter sheds, establishment of camps, emergency operation centers (EOCs), labor registration, medical camps, making provision of drinking water supply, medicine and ration, LPG, and lighting.
According to reports, advisor Sharma also directed the director of base camps and others involved in the operations to make proper sanitary arrangements regarding the functioning of bath units, toilet, clean bedding, and daily cleaning of the camp areas. The advisors also asked the senior officers to supervise all the arrangements personally to ensure safe and convenient yatra.
Senior Superintendent of Police, Ganderbal, Khalil Ahmed Poswal said that the first batch of yatris has reached Baltal base camp safely. He said “Adequate arrangements have been put in place along the Baltal route to ensure peaceful yatra. All security wings have been geared up to provide adequate security and other facilities to the yatris.”