Amarnath yatra starts after 2 years; Heavy forces deployed, restrictions on food menu

by Shatakshi Gupta

After a two-year COVID pandemic pause, the 43-day Amarnath Yatra of 2022 finally gets underway. One of the most significant and revered yatras for Hindu pilgrims is the Amarnath pilgrimage. Millions of worshippers from India and other countries come to the cave temple. Vedic chants heralded the beginning of the Amarnath Yatra on Thursday morning from Baltal and Pahalgam.

What are the security concerns?

This time, sticky bombs that are a threat on Amarnath’s trek, which is located at an elevation of 3,888 metres. This voyage of 43 days has been planned for the past two years. After the removal of Article 370, this is the first visit. Besides, tailor’s murder in Udaipur, Rajasthan, two days ago has heightened the possibility of terrorism in the nation. The police administration has also increased its level of alertness in light of the Amarnath Yatra.

What are the security provisions?

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For the Amarnath Yatra, which will take place from June 30 to August 11 at this time, more than 3 lakh people have signed up. Since the Yatra is taking place after two years, the number of pilgrims could surpass the previous record by 8 lakhs.

350 companies from the Center have deployed to the Amarnath Yatra for the first time. More than 40,000 Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) personnels have been stationed in these.

Three different levels of protection will be in place for the trip. Joint preparations for the Road Opening Party have been made by the CAPF and the Jammu and Kashmir Police.

The army is in charge of maintaining security in the tall highlands and thick forests. Additionally, all access roads will be totally secure.

The travel is being watched over by CCTV cameras and drones. Snipers and sharpshooters have also been placed in strategic areas at the same time.

At crucial places, NDRF, UTSDRF, and MRT have also been deployed. For both joining vehicles and passengers, RFID tags have been issued. 350 companies of the central military have also been deployed in addition to the Jammu and Kashmir Police.

Food related changes:

Each day, one lakh people’s food will be prepared in all of these langars. In these langars, food is also served to devotees, members of the security forces, and staff from the government. At the base camp, enough ration and LPG cylinders have been kept on hand to power the stove for a whole day.

The Amarnath Yatra 2022 food menu forbids colddrinks and emphasises healthy food items. For the ongoing Amarnath Yatra 2022, the Shri Amarnath Shrine Board is putting a lot of effort into ensuring the safety of the pilgrims.  

The devotees will only have access to the light food that is featured on the menu. The list, which is relevant to langar stalls, food stalls, and numerous other shops, excludes fast food. All non-vegetarian foods, cold beverages, alcohol, and other intoxicants are prohibited during the trip. Plain rice, cumin rice, khichdi, and Nutrella rice are some of the nutritious options available to yatris.

The Amarnath Yatra 2022 Board’s meal menu focuses on quality and attention to detail. Items with a high fat content must be avoided at all costs. There are only a few things available: herbal tea, low-fat curd, lemon squash, water, and glucose. Devotees can carry low-fat items like kheer or porridge along with them.