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MHA to monitor Amarnath Yatra security’

With the first batch of pilgrims all set to leave Jammu for Amarnath Yatra the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has decided to directly monitor the security arrangements along the route.

“While the government in the state has chalked out a foolproof strategy to ensure incident free and peaceful pilgrimage, the MHA has decided not to leave the entire responsibility of security on the J&K government,” quoted sources as having said.

“MHA has asked officers from its internal security and Kashmir divisions to monitor the yatra arrangements on a day-to-day basis, and stay in regular touch with the security officials on the ground,” the news agency added.

“As many as 213 additional companies of paramilitary forces have been deployed to secure the nearly 400 km Yatra route from winter capital Jammu to the two base camps of Baltal and south Kashmir’s Pahalgam,” one of the government officials said.

Sources said that a Core Group security meeting was held to review and coordinate the security arrangements for the annual pilgrimage.

A joint strategy on the operational and administrative arrangements was chalked out by all the agencies to ensure peace incident-free yatra,” sources said and added that intelligence updates were discussed in detail to assess any security threat to the yatra.

The first batch of Amarnath pilgrims is scheduled to depart from the Jammu base on Wednesday under tight security.Director General of Police, S P Vaid said that all necessary security arrangements have been put in place to ensure a smooth conduct of the annual Amarnath Yatra.

The security arrangements for yatra are a top most priority and police will work round the clock to ensure incident free yatra,” said DGP.

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