Amarnath pilgrimage: Death toll touches 72
Srinagar: Four more pilgrims and a porter died en-route to the holy cave shrine of Amarnath in south Kashmir Himalayas since last night, taking the toll during this year's pilgrimage to 72, officials said.
Sixty-year-old Nirmala Tripathi, a resident of Uttar Pradesh, died of cardiac arrest at the 3,880 metre high cave shrine after paying obeisance to the naturally formed ice-shivlingam last night, the officials said.
In another case, Chand, a resident of Madhya Pradesh, suffered a heart attack and died near Brarimarg along 16-km Baltal cave route in Ganderbal district yesterday, they said.
Two unidentified pilgrims, including a woman, were found dead along the traditional 45-km Pahalgam cave route between Chandanwari and Panjtarni, the officials said, adding efforts were on to identify the deceased.
A porter identified as Abdul Rehman Paddar (65), hailing from Anantnag district, died of cardiac arrest at Zojibal near Pahalgam, raising the number of porters who passed away during the pilgrimage to two, they said.
The annual Amarnath yatra commenced on June 25 from the twin tracks from Baltal and Pahalgam and was going on smoothly although the weather remained cloudy today.
As many as 4,23,681 pilgrims have visited the cave shrine till last evening, they said.