The nearly two-month-long Amarnath Yatra saw a successful completion on Wednesday despite heightened threats from militants and inclement weather.
Nearly four lakh pilgrims were assisted by and dog squads and armed forces equipped with state-of-the-art gadgets in providing multi-layered security during their arduous trekking in hostile terrain to pay obeisance to the cave shrine of Amarnath, located at a 3,880 metre-height in the Himalayas.
"There have been threats from militants, including Lashkar-e-Taiba, to disrupt the Yatra. But we successfully foiled all attempts of the militants to target the pilgrims," CRPF Deputy Inspector General (operations), South Kashmir, Nalin Prabhat told a visiting group of journalists.
Multi-cordon security blanket is thrown along the yatra route. While the Indian Army mans the heights to prevent any infiltration from the mountains, BSF personnel dot the trekking route. The safety of the camps put up for the pilgrims for night halts is handled by the CRPF jawans.
"The idea is that even if terrorist breach one cordon, they will be checkmated by one of the remaining two," BSF DIG Rakesh Sharma said.
The conclusion of the Yatra was marked by a group of devotees carrying the mace of Lord Shiva to the cave shrine.
The mace, popularly known as 'Chhari Mubarak', is carried every year from its abode 'Dashnami Akhara' in Srinagar to the Amarnath shrine during the annual pilgrimage for special prayers.