The 16th batch comprising of 4,584 pilgrims, including 1,152women and 95 seers, Wednesday left the Bhagwati Nagar base camp here to offertheir prayers at the cave shrine of Amarnath in south Kashmir Himalayas,officials said.
The pilgrims, including 28 children, left in a convoy of 192vehicles under tight security arrangements in the early hours and will bereaching the twin base camps of Pahalgam in Anantnag and Baltal in Ganderbaldistricts later in the day, the officials said. The shrine is located at analtitude of 3,880 metres.
The yatra, which started on the twin routes — thetraditional 36-km Pahalgam and 14-km shorter Baltal — on July 1, crossed thetwo-lakh mark on Tuesday.
Of the latest batch, the officials said 2,612 pilgrims,including 536 women, 12 children and 95 seers, are heading for Pahalgam toundertake the yatra from there, while the remaining 1,972 pilgrims, including616 women and 16 children, have preferred the Baltal route.
With this batch, a total of 80,181 pilgrims have left theBhagwati Nagar base camp here since the commencement of the yatra, theofficials said, adding that as many as 2,05,083 pilgrims have paid obeisance atthe cave shrine till late Tuesday.
The yatra is scheduled to end on August 15, coinciding withthe Raksha Bandhan festival.
As many as 2,85,006 lakh pilgrims had paid obeisance at theshrine last year, while the number of pilgrims was 3,52,771 in 2015, 3,20,490in 2016 and 2,60,003 in 2017.