Jammu: Welcoming the formation of a sub-
committee for fixing duration of the Amarnath yatra from next
year, an amalgam of religious, social and trade bodies on Monday
urged Shri Amarnath Shrine Board to upgrade medical facilities
for the pilgrims.
"We welcome the formation of the sub-committee to decide
on the duration of the annual pilgrimage to the Amarnath cave
shrine," Baba Yatri Niyas (BYN) president Surinder Mohan
Aggarwal told reporters here.
Urging the Jammu and Kashmir government and SASB to
upgrade medical facilities for Amarnath yatris, he said 83
pilgrims have lost their lives in the ongoing yatra as proper
emergency medical support could not be provided to them.
SASB on Friday last had constituted the panel, headed by
spiritual leader Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, to suggest the duration
of the annual Amarnath pilgrimage, an issue that has become a
bone of contention between Hindu religious groups and
The duration of the Amarnath pilgrimage that used to be
for one month was extended two months from 2005 onwards.
However, it was reduced to 45 days this year. The shrine board
had maintained the decision was taken in view of the safety of
the pilgrims. The move has come under severe criticism from