About 8500 pilgrims leave Baltal for Cave, yatra from Pahalgam remains suspended

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About 8500 pilgrims left Baltal base camp for holy Amarnath cave shrine in south Kashmir Himalayas while yatra remained suspended from traditional Pahalgam route.
Meanwhile, over 1.45 lakh pilgrims, including women, children, sadhus from different parts of the country had darshan of the self made Ice-Shivlingam at the cave shrine at about 13000 feet since the commencement of the 48-day-long pilgrimage from July 2.
A yatra official said that yatra was progressing smoothly from shortest Baltal track and weather was also pleasant.
He said about 8500 pilgrims, including women and sadhus, left Baltal base camp early this morning for the cave shrine. The pilgrims are likely to reach the cave shrine this afternoon after covering the hilly distance on foot.
Though young pilgrims will cover the distance on foot elderly persons used horses, dhandi and palkies for the pilgrimage.
Since all the pilgrims are arriving at Baltal base camp from Jammu, the yatra from traditional Pahalgam route remained suspended.
There was no yatri at Nunwan Pahalgam base camp as yatris are being directly taken to Baltal to avoid Anantnag, which witnessed massive violence since Saturday.
For the third day today no yatri left the Pahalgam base camp. There was also no yatri at Chandanwari, the last motorable halting station. However, he said pilgrims who had night halt at different places on the track have started their onward journey towards the cave shrine early this morning.
All the pilgrims are also returning to Baltal camp after paying obeisance at the cave, he said. Yatra official said that on the 12th day yesterday, 7,485 Yatris paid obeisance. With this a total of 1,45,204 Yatris had Darshan of the Ice-Lingam at the Shrine since July 2.
Majority of them have since returned to their homes while ten have died due to cardiac arrest while one lost his life in a road accident.

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