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Kedarnath temple portals to be opened on May 4

However, road leading to shrine is still in bad shape despite govt promising to repair it before pilgrimage season

dehradun Updated: Feb 28, 2014 14:58 IST

Dehradun: Even as the road leading to Kedarnath shrine in Uttarakhand is still in bad shape, the authorities have decided to go ahead with their plan to open it. The portals of the revered Hindu shrine Kedarnath will be thrown open for the pilgrims on May 4. The shrine was closed mid way in June during last year’s disastrous flashfloods that killed nearly 5,000 pilgrims.

On the other hand, portals of Badrinath will be opened on May 5 as per schedule. Priests at the Ukhimath temple in Garhwal region, where the idol of Kedarnath is placed during the winters, have decided the date. As per programme, the portals will be opened at 6am on May 4.
The Char Dham yatra is opened for six months in a year. However, after the mid-June disaster last year, it was halted. Later, in October the yatra to Kedarnath was resumed through a difficult trekking route.

Though the government has claimed that roads leading to Kedarnath would be repaired before the beginning of the pilgrimage season in May, the ground realities suggest something else.

Border Roads Organisation (BRO) that looks after the national highway leading to Kedarnath is reportedly facing fund crisis. The Uttarakhand chief secretary Subhash Kumar had recently requested the Centre to expedite the repairing work of the roads.

Chief minister Harish Rawat had also asserted that road repair works were top on government’s priority. Ajayendra Ajay, a flashflood victim in Augustmuni says, “The pace of reconstruction works is very slow. Pilgrimage must be resumed but the state should first put things in order.”

CM assures help to Kedarnath priests.

Chief minister Harish Rawat has announced that 50% of the compensation meant fmid-June or the mid-June flash flood victims, which is yet to be determined, would be given to Kedarnath priests through the Vir Chandra Singh Garhwali Tourism self-employment scheme.

First Published: Feb 28, 2014 14:50 IST