Srinagar: Army will construct a bailey bridge at Baltal base camp in Ganderbal district of Jammu and Kashmir to facilitate smooth movement of pilgrims intending to pay obeisance at the 3,880-mt-high holy cave shrine of Amarnath.
"The Chinar Corps will construct a 50-feet bridge at Baltal to cater for the anticipated heavy rush for the yatra this year," a defence spokesman said here.
Lakhs of Hindu devotees are expected to join the yatra, scheduled to begin on June 28, this year. The existing bridge at Baltal, which serves as the shortest 16-km route to the cave shrine, has been damaged due to heavy snowfall.
The Army decision to construct the bailey bridge came after a request for assistance by the civil administration to General Officer Commanding of Srinagar-based Chinar Corps Lt Gen Gurmit Singh, the spokesman said.
He said a makeshift bridge has been constructed, but since a heavy volume of yatris is anticipated, the additional bridge will facilitate smooth movement for all.
"The construction is commencing on June 18 and the bridge is expected to be ready by June 20," he said.
Meanwhile, Kashmir Divisional Commissioner Shalindra Kumar today chaired a high-level meeting to take stock of preparedness and arrangements for the smooth conduct of the yatra.
Arrangements with regard to adequate availability of essential commodities besides medicare facilities, power supply and drinking water facilities were reviewed in the meeting, an official spokesman said.
Control rooms would be set up at all the halting stations en route to the holy cave, he said.
He also directed for ensuring availability of communication facilities and parking facilities at Pahalgam, Chandanwari and Baltal for the yatris.
Meteorology department officials were asked to provide weather forecast on daily basis, besides the fire and emergency department was also asked to set up fire tenders at all the halting stations en route the holy cave, he said.