JAMMU, INDIA June 30, 2015 (India TV News): Amid tight security arrangements, the annual Amarnath yatra will begin from Jammu as the first batch of over 5,000 pilgrims will leave for 3,888-metre high cave shrine in south Kashmir Himalayas. The yatra will be escorted by heavy contingent of security forces to twin base-camps of Amarnath cave shrine in Baltal in Ganderbal district of Central Kashmir and Pahalgam belt of South Kashmir.
Situated in a narrow gorge at the farther end of Lidder Valley, Amarnath shrine stands at 3,888 m, 46 Km from Pahalgam and 14 Kms from Baltal. In Kashmir Valley, the 59 days annual yatra will start from July 2– an auspicious day of Hindu calendar and conclude on Shravan Purnima (Raksha Bandhan) on August 29. Over 200,000 pilgrims have secured advance registration and 22,104 have purchased helicopter tickets from Baltal and Pahalgam to Panjtarni. “Entire state administration is fully geared up to provide every facility like, drinking water, medicare, electricity and security to the yatris at base camps,” a official said.