Amarnath (Jammu and Kashmir) [India], August 23, (ANI): The 59-day long symbolic annual Amarnath yatra concluded as 'Chhari Mubarak' (Holy Mace of Lord Shiva) reached holy cave shrine on the occasion of Raksha Bandhan on Sunday.
Mahant Deependra Giri with other priests performed 'samapan pooja' to mark the end of this Amarnath yatra at the holy cave.
The Jammu and Kashmir government had in June this year decided to cancel this year's Amarnath Yatra but had announced that all the traditional religious rituals will be performed at the Holy Cave Shrine as per past practice, said the Shri Amarnath Ji Shrine Board.
"A threadbare discussion was held with the esteemed members of Shri Amarnath Shrine Board including Swami Avdheshanand Ji, DC Raina, Dr Devi Prasad Shetty, Prof Anita Billawariya, Sudarshan Kumar, Prof Vishwamurti Shashtri, Pt. Bhajan Sopori, Dr CM Seth and Tripta Dhawan on the present COVID-19 situation before arriving at the decision," said an official release.
"Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, who is also Chairman of Shri Amarnath Shrine Board had earlier held detailed deliberations with Chief Secretary Dr Arun Kumar Mehta, DGP, Dilbag Singh, Principal Secretary Home Shaleen Kabra, and Principal Secretary to Lt Governor, Nitishwar Kumar, who is also the CEO of Shrine Board, and directed that devotees should be enabled to attend to morning and evening Aarti in online mode. He said it would help them to pay their obeisance while also avoiding travel and exposure," it added.
The Shrine Board had put in place a virtual and televised mechanism for live Darshan of Aarti from the holy cave.
The online registrations for this year's Amarnath Yatra had commenced on April 15, only to get suspended a week later in wake of the escalating number of COVID-19 cases. (ANI)