Srinagar, Aug 26: The longest Amarnath Yatra 2023 is finally inching to a conclusion as sages are carrying Chhari Mubarak to the holy cave while no fresh batches of Yatris left for Kashmir from Jammu. So far, 4.40 lakh pilgrims visited the Amarnath cave shrine this year.
Officials said that the last batch of Yatris left for the holy cave on August 23 and since then, the pilgrimage has remained suspended.
An official of the Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB) said, “No yatri is coming here now, so no convoy could leave Jammu for the last few days.”
Bhagwati Nagar base camp has been deserted for the past few days, forcing the operators to end their services. According to officials, it is likely that the counters there will be closed too.
Over the last several years, Amarnath yatra has been witnessing fewer footfalls. Compared to over 6 lakh pilgrims who visited the cave shrine in 2012, the number has come down to over 3 lakh in 2022 and 4.4 lakh this year.
The 62-day-long pilgrimage commenced on July 1 this year and will culminate with the event of ‘Chhari Mubarak’ on August 31.
The yatra commenced simultaneously from both routes — the Pahalgam track in Anantnag district and Baltal in Ganderbal district.
The Chaddi Mubarak has to reach the holy cave on the 31st of August. The 145-kilometre Chhari Mubarak Yatra starts from Dashnami Akhara in Srinagar.
On the yatra route, sages performed hawans at Pampore, Bijbehara, Anantnag, Mattan, Aishmuqam and Pahalgam on Saturday where the procession takes rest for two days before proceeding to the Amarnath cave shrine.
“Thereafter, Chhari Mubarak will stay for another night halt at Chandanwari on August 28, Sheshnag on August 29, and Panchtarni on August 30. On August 31, on the occasion of Shravan-Punima, Chhari Mubarak will be taken to the holy shrine of Amarnath Ji to reach it before sunrise, and pujan shall begin with the rising sun,” an official said.