Amarnath Yatra halted after heavy rain, highway closed

  • PTI, Srinagar
  • Updated: Jul 10, 2015 14:36 IST
Amarnath yatris cover themselves with a plastic sheet during rain fall as they stand in queue to pay obescience at the Himalayan cave shrine of Amarnath. (Nitin Kanotra/ HT Photo)

The Amarnath Yatra was on Friday suspended on the Baltal and Pahalgam routes due to incessant rainfall since Thursday night.

"The yatra has been suspended from both the Baltal and Pahalgam routes due to rains that have made the track slippery," a police official said.

More than 2,000 passenger vehicles, including 68 carrying Kashmir-bound Amarnath pilgrims, are stranded on the Jammu-Srinagar highway, following its closure due to landslides triggered by rainfall.

"The highway has been closed and the yatra halted due to landslides at several places triggered by the heavy overnight rainfall," SSP (Traffic, NH) Sanjay Kotwal said.

He said 68 vehicles carrying Amarnath pilgrims have been asked to stop near Kud and Patnitop. "The traffic was from Srinagar to Jammu so 1,000 vehicles from the valley are stuck on the highway and a similar number of vehicles going from Jammu to Srinagar are stranded at several places," Kotwal said.

He said the Border Road Organisation (BRO) was working round-the-clock to restore connectivity.

Second closure in 24 hours

This is the second time in 24 hours that the Jammu-Srinagar highway has been closed following heavy rains.

The highway was closed at 3am on Thursday following heavy rainfall, due to which the yatra was halted. The highway was thrown open after remaining closed for several hours.

"On Thursday, we opened the highway to traffic after it was closed due to early morning landslides. On Friday again it was closed due to fresh landslides," he said.

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