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Amarnath yatra suspended from Jammu today as precautionary measure

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Jammu: The Amarnath yatra was suspended on Monday as a precautionary measure following a strike called by separatists in the Kashmir valley to mark the third death anniversary of former Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani, officials said.

The annual pilgrimage to the 3,880-meter high holy cave shrine in south Kashmir Himalayas will resume on Tuesday, they said.

The officials said the Amarnath-bound convoy, which usually leaves the Bhagwati Nagar base camp in Jammu for Kashmir in the early hours, was not allowed to head for the cave shrine to avoid any untoward incident in view of law and order situation in the valley.

Wani, once a poster boy of militancy in the valley, was killed in an encounter with security forces on 8 July, 2016, in Kokernag area of south Kashmir’s Anantnag district.

“The yatra is suspended from Jammu for the day and will resume on Tuesday,” a police official said.

So far, a total of 36,309 pilgrims have left the Bhagwati Nagar base camp since the commencement of the yatra from Jammu on 30 June, a day ahead of the official start of the 46-day pilgrimage from the twin tracks — traditional 36-kilometre Pahalgam in Anantnag district and 14-kilometre shorter Baltal route in Ganderbal district.

Till Sunday night, 95,923 yatris had offered prayers at the cave shrine, housing the naturally formed ice-shivlingam, since the beginning of the yatra, which is scheduled to end on 15 August coinciding with the Raksha Bandhan festival. PTI

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