Jammu and Kashmir administration withdraws order cancelling Amarnath Yatra – india news
The annual Amarnath Yatra in the south Kashmir Himalayas was shelved on Wednesday only to be revived a short while later by the Jammu and Kashmir administration saying the cancelling order stands withdrawn.
Earlier, on February 13 when Covid-19 outbreak had not reached the country, the government decided to hold 42-day long annual pilgrimage to the holy cave shrine.
The pilgrimage had to start from June 23 and had to conclude on August 3 on the day of Shravan Purnima (Raksha Bandhan).
Last year, the duration of the yatra was 40 days while in 2018 the pilgrimage had a duration of 60 days.
In an official statement titled “Shri Amarnathji Yatra 2020 cancelled due to outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic”, a spokesman said that the decision was taken at the 38th Board meeting of the Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB) which met under the chairmanship of Lt Governor G C Murmu at Raj Bhavan.
However, he said the board decided that the Pratham Pooja’ and ‘Sampann Pooja’ would be done with traditional fervor.
Later, within half an hour, another official statement was issued which read, “The Press Note titled Shri Amarnathji Yatra 2020 cancelled due to outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic may be treated cancelled and withdrawn.”
Earlier, Murmu, who is also chairman of the SASB, had said there were 77 red zones identified in the Kashmir valley from where the pilgrimage passed.
“Due to this pandemic, the establishment of langars, medical facility, camp establishment, material mobilization and snow clearance are not possible,” he said.
“Though Government of India extended the nationwide lockdown till May 3, it is highly unpredictable to know which direction it will take later. The safety of the pilgrims is of prime importance,” he said.