ibnlive » India

Jul 03, 2011 at 01:35pm IST

Amarnath yatra suspended due to landslides

Srinagar: The Amarnath yatra was on Sunday suspended from both Baltal and Pahalgam routes following landslides triggered by heavy rains, officials said.

"The pilgrims were not allowed from either Pahalgam or Baltal route today due to landslides triggered by rainfall during the night," an official at the yatra control room said.

He said the suspension of the yatra left over 60,000 pilgrims stranded at various base camps including Baltal, Sheshnag, Pajtarni and Nunwan.

Amarnath yatra suspended due to landslides

The death toll in this year's pilgrimage has gone up to 12 as seven more devotees died on Saturday.

"The yatra will be resumed only after the track is cleared of the landslides and declared safe for trekking," the official said.

He said a massive landslide blocked the track between Railpathri and Baltal on the shorter 13-km route, preferred by large number of pilgrims compared to the traditional 46-km Pahalgam route.

So far, 91,504 pilgrims have visited the 3,880 metre high cave shrine to pay obeisance to the naturally formed ice lingam, considered to be the edifice of lord Shiva.

Meanwhile, the death toll in this year's pilgrimage, which commenced on June 29, has gone up to 12 as seven more devotees died due to natural causes since Saturday.

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