A large number of devotees offered special prayers at a temple in Srinagar on Sunday as part of rituals associated with the journey of "Chhari Mubarak" or the holy mace of Lord Shiva to the 3,880 metre-high Amarnath cave shrine.
Every year the holy mace is carried from Srinagar to the cave shrine in South Kashmir Himalayas and back, performing rituals at temples on way, to mark the culmination of the pilgrimmage on August seven.
Special prayers were held at the Amareshwar temple Srinagar, known as the abode of 'Chhari Mubarak', ahead of its onward journey to the Amarnath shrine next week.
Mahant Dependera Giri, the head priest of the Dashnami Akhara temple, led the prayers for peace, prosperity and strengthening of secular ethos.
The 'charri' will be taken in a procession to the cave shrine on July 31 from its abode at Budshah chowk. The holy mace would reach the Lord Shiva shrine on August 5 for 'darshan' on 'shravan-purnima' and before dusk would start its return journey to Pahalgam.
Special ceremonies would be performed on the banks of Lidder river on August 7, marking the culmination of the annual yatra.
The official yatra commenced on June 15 and so far over 3.50 lakh pilgrims had darshan of the naturally formed ice-shivlingam at the cave shrine.