‘Curbs on highway reduced to 2 hrs only’

People should bear with it as it is a matter of security of pilgrims: Governor
‘Curbs on highway reduced to 2 hrs only’
Governor Satya Pal Malik interacts with Yatris at Pantha Chowk transit camp, Srinagar on Sunday.

J&K Governor Satya Pal Malik Sunday said the restrictions on the civilian traffic along a stretch of the Srinagar-Jammu National Highway have been reduced from five to two hours only and that people of Kashmir "must bear with it" till the Amarnath pilgrimage is over.

He said the pilgrims were fully satisfied with thehospitality of the local people, the security- and the administrative-levelarrangements put in place for the smooth conduct of the pilgrimage that startedofficially on July 1.

The yatra is going on smoothly from twin base camps inKashmir— Chandanwari in Anantnag district of south Kashmir and Baltal inCentral Kashmir's Gandebal district.

Talking to reporters at PanthaChowk transit camp of yatris,the Governor said the curbs on the movement of the civilian vehicles fromQazigund to Nashri have been reduced from five to just two hours. "Peopleshould bear with it as it is a matter of security of Amarnath pilgrims."

Replying to a query about suffering of people due to suchrestrictions, the Governor said in his state, curbs remain in place for morethan 30 days for Kawadyatra and people are cooperating there.

The Governor added that there was no complaint in thisregard, and restriction on the travel of the civilian vehicles has not causedany impact on the tourist flow to Kashmir. "Look at the tourist places likeGulmarg and Pahalgam. They are flooded with the tourists irrespective of thosewho come for the pilgrimage," he said.

"For two hours and for the safety and security of thepilgrims, people have to bear with the curbs till yatra period is over," hesaid.

He said people of Kashmir are fully aware of "whatever hashappened on the Srinagar-Jammu Highway."

Asked if the pilgrims were satisfied with the security andother arrangements put in place by the government, the Governor said all theyatris were fully satisfied with the hospitality displayed by the people ofKashmir since decades.

"Yatris like people of Kashmir. Let me tell you again thepilgrimage has been conducted in Kashmir only because of the support of thelocals. The pilgrims are also satisfied with the security andadministrative-level arrangements. Everything is going on smoothly," he said.

Replying to a query about the security arrangements,J&K's Director General of Police (DGP) Dilbagh Singh said that weather hasbeen favourable with the result all the security arrangements were put in placein a very effective manner.

"Today is the seventh day of the pilgrimage and almost onelakh pilgrims had the Darshan at the holy cave. I have personally visited thebase camps and reviewed the arrangements and everything is going on smoothly,"he said. "I am hopeful the flow of Yatris will increase in the days ahead giventhe way weather is behaving."

He said on the one hand the Amarnathyatra is going on, andon the other the preparations were also put in place for those going on Hajjpilgrimage.

"As far as security arrangements are concerned, people arecooperating and there is no complaint from the locals," he said.

Asked whether there would be any restrictions on the Yatramovement on July 8, (death anniversary of BurhanWani), the DGP said that therewould be no curbs on the movement of vehicles ferrying Yatris.

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