Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha on Tuesday visited Pahalgam and reviewed the arrangements and ongoing works ahead of Shri Amarnath Ji Yatra that is starting from July 1. The Lt Governor conducted on-site inspection at Nunwan and Chandanwari Base Camps and reviewed ongoing works and logistics, lodging, health and other facilities that have been put in place for the comfort of pilgrims.
Subsequently, a meeting was held that was attended by Atal Dulloo, Additional Chief Secretary, Agriculture Production Department; Shailendra Kumar, Principal Secretary, Public Works (R&B); Dr Mandeep Kumar Bhandari, CEO, Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board; Vijay Kumar, ADGP, Kashmir and Vijay Kumar Bidhuri, Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir.
The Lt Governor was informed about the elaborate arrangements put in place by all the stakeholder departments pertaining to the snow clearances of all sections of tracks, deployment of trained manpower, helipads operations, health facilities, water and power supply at transit camps and halt points, allotment of tents and shops, disaster management, contingency plan for accommodation, etc.
The Lt Governor directed the concerned departments to make all necessary services accessible to the pilgrims at railway stations, airports, on travel routes and Yatra base camps. He asked the officials to create a strong healthcare and health emergency infrastructure with additional teams of doctors and nursing staff. He further asked them to harness the benefits of technology to deal with any emergent situation.
Proper arrangements for regular ambulance, heli-ambulance service and oxygen cylinders must be ensured, the Lt Governor told the officials. He also took stock of the arrangements being made for drinking water and sanitation and facilities for sanitation workers deployed to ensure cleanliness at the base camps.
The Lt Governor passed explicit directions for the camp in-charge and concerned officials for operationalization of Sheshnag and Panjtarni camp by 20 June. It must be ensured that the track is through for ponies, Pithoos from Chandanwari to holy cave well before the commencement of the Yatra, he said.
The Lt Governor set the deadline of 20 June for the completion of various works including snow clearance at MG Top, Panjtarni and other such areas; completion of emergency landing platform at holy cave; boundary walls, safety railing on vulnerable stretches; water supply and installation of RO in every camp.
Power supply and illumination in every camp should be done by June 17th. Health facilities and availability of health equipment should be ensured. SoP by the Health Department to be made operational at each camp, the Lt Governor told the officials.
The Lt Governor directed the KPDCL and Jal Shakti department for engaging skilled manpower and day-to-day monitoring of water and power logistics. He emphasized on involvement of members of the PRIs and Civil society in successful conduct of Shri Amarnathji Yatra.
“We must learn from the challenges of last year and take comprehensive measures accordingly. All the concerned departments, CAPFs, J&K Police, Army and other stakeholders should work in close coordination for making best arrangements to ensure smooth pilgrimage. Feedback on tracks from civil administration, Security forces should also be taken,” he added.
The Lt Governor directed the officials to lay special focus on Sanitation, Quality of tents, fire extinguishers and ensure adequate gaps during installation of tents. No unauthorised tents should be installed. Strict enforcement of SOPs and guidelines must be ensured near holy cave, he added. He also directed the Irrigation and Flood Control department to complete the Nallah works by June 25.