SRINAGAR: All arrangements relating to the Amarnath Yatra, which is commencing from June 28, should be put in place well in time to ensure a comfortable pilgrimage for all those who visit the shrine this year, N.N. Vohra, Governor of J&K, said Wednesday.
Vohra, who is also chairman of the Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB), gave clear directions on these lines to all concerned authorities after inspecting the current status of arrangements being made for the Yatra at Baltal and Access Control Gate at Domel, according to an official statement.
Earlier, the Governor accompanied by Rakesh Kumar Gupta, Chief Executive Officer, SASB, conducted an aerial reconnaissance of the Baltal route. Subsequently, in a meeting held with the Ganderbal district administration, the current status of the snow clearance on the Baltal cave route and the repair and upgradation of the entire Baltal track was reviewed.
The B&R Department informed the Governor that the first 7kms. of the track from Baltal had been cleared till Wednesday. The Governor discussed, department wise, the facilities to be provided for the Yatra and particularly reviewed the position in regard to power, water supply and medical facilities in the entire Yatra area. The Governor directed the Labour and Animal Husbandry Departments to ensure timely and proper registration of Ponies, Pony-wallas, Dandi-wallas and Palki-wallas in order to ensure against unauthorized persons crowding the narrow tracks.
Arrangements regarding the provision of safety measures at the Baltal Camp, particularly fire and emergency services and setting up of a Joint Control Room, were discussed with the Fire Services Department and Inspector General of Police, Kashmir. The Governor devoted considerable time to review the steps being taken by the Sonamarg Development Authority for collection and disposal of wastes generated during the Yatra. Arrangements for sanitation and cleanliness of areas within and outside Baltal Base Camp were also discussed.
After the visits to Domel and Baltal the Governor visited Neelgrath to inspect the facilities being created here for the operation of helicopter services for the Yatra. The Governor was informed that the required facilities would be in place by June 20 for the convenience of the Yatris.
The Review Meeting was attended, among others, by A G. Mir, IGP, Kashmir; Sarmad Hafeez, Deputy Commissioner, Ganderbal; Maj. Gen. S.T. Upasani, GOC, Victor Force; Farooq Jeelani, Conservator of Forests, Ganderbal; Shahid Mehraj, SSP, Ganderbal; P.P. Singh, Addl. CEO, SASB; Farooq Ahmad, CEO, Sonamarg Development Authority; Ajaz Ahmad, IAS (Prob.); Javed Koul, S.P. Traffic (Rural); M.R. Gasi, ADDC, Ganderbal; R.K. Bhat, ADC, Ganderbal; N.A. Wani, ACR, Ganderbal; Dr. Mehmooda Kar, CMO, Ganderbal; R.K. Pandita, General Manager (Works), SASB; Arif Mohammad. Imran, Assistant. Labour Commissioner, Ganderbal; Hafiz Ullah Mir, DFO, Ganderbal; Muzaffar Lone, Xen, PDD; Mohammad Shafi Sofi, Xen PHE; Sami Arif Yasin, Xen R&B; Mohammad Aktar, Assistant Director, Fire and Emergency Services; Shafqat Ali Khan, Executive Officer, Municipal Committee, Ganderbal; Muazzam Ali, District Information Officer, Ganderbal; Abdul Majid Rather, ARTO, Ganderbal; Khalida Amin, Designated officer Food safety; Fayaz Ahmad Bhat, Food Safety Officer; Mohammad. Amin Bhat, Assistant Controller, Legal Meterology, Ganderbal.