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42 days long Amarnath Yatra to begin June 23

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Jammu, Feb 14: The 42-day-long annual pilgrimage to the holy cave shrine of Amarnath in South Kashmir Himalayas will commence on June 23, the shrine board said on Friday.

This year's pilgrimage will be longer by two days against last year's 40 days. The pilgrimage had a duration of 60 days in 2018.

The Jammu and Kashmir administration on August 2 last year had issued a security advisory asking Amarnath pilgrims and tourists to leave Kashmir as soon as possible, citing terror threat in the Valley.

The advisory was issued just before the Centre announced the nullification of Article 370 of the Constitution and bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir into Union Territories on August 5.

"The board decided that a 42-day yatra would commence on 23rd June, 2020, an auspicious day of Jagan Nath Rath Yatra as per Hindu calendar, and conclude on Shravan Purnima (Raksha Bandhan) on 3rd August, 2020," Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB), Bipul Pathak said here.

The decision was taken during the 37th meeting of the board held at Raj Bhawan here and presided over by Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor G C Murmu who is also the chairman of the SASB.

The registration for the Yatra will begin from April 01.

Considering the success of the pilot project of online registration of limited number of yatris in 2019, the board decided to increase the quota of online registration, a spokesman of the board said.

No person below the age of 13 years and above the age of 75 years shall be permitted to undertake the pilgrimage, he said.

Instructions were also issued to ensure that the yatra routes and camps remain plastic-free, the spokesman said.

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