Srinagar: Another batch of Amarnath Yatra pilgrims started their journey from the Panthachowk Srinagar base camp on Thursday under heightened security measures.

The pilgrims are heading along the Baltal and Pahalgam routes.

The annual yatra, which lasts for 45 days, is a major concern for the government amid the recent terrorist attacks in Jammu and Kashmir.

The annual pilgrimage (Amarnath Yatra) is conducted by the Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board.

The devotees of Lord Shiva undertake the arduous annual pilgrimage to the holy cave shrine located in Kashmir Himalayas in July-August.

Meanwhile, Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann directed the Punjab Police to ensure smooth and safe passage for devotees going for the Amarnath Yatra, Special Director General of Police (Special DGP) Law and Order Arpit Shukla on Wednesday chaired a high-level meeting of Police, Army, Civil Administration, and other security agencies to take stock of the security arrangements in this regard.

The meeting, which was held in Pathankot, focused on strategic preparations for the ongoing Amarnath Yatra, encompassing diverse aspects such as police deployment, security measures, traffic management, and disaster management, Information and Public Relations Department, Punjab stated.

Special DGP Arpit Shukla, while chairing the meeting, deliberated on securing the International Border and ensuring the safety of the devotees going for the Amarnath Yatra.

He said that Punjab Police has further escalated the level of security with the deployment of 550 Punjab Police personnel, SOG, sniper detachments, bomb disposal, and other commando units, and a high alert has been sounded, with an eight-second line of defence Nakas established by Punjab Police.

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