The first batch of Amarnath yatris from outside the state was welcomed on Wednesday by the police and civil administration amid tight security arrangements at Lakhanpur, the gateway to Jammu and Kashmir.
The yatra was flagged off from Kathua to Jammu after security check, from where they will leave for the holy cave of Shri Amarnathji on Thursday. Deputy Inspector General, Jammu-Kathua range, Shakeel Ahmed Beig, who along with Deputy Commissioner Kathua, Jatindra Kumar Singh, was present on the occasion, said required security arrangements have been made for the smooth conduct of the yatra.
"All arrangements have been made for smooth conduct of yatra to the holy cave. Sufficient security personnel are deployed on way to foil any evil design of terrorists," Beig said.
A high degree of watch and ward is being maintained across the yatra route following a terrorist attack on the army convoy in Srinagar on Monday in which eight jawans were killed and 19 others were injured.
Jatindra Kumar Singh, meanwhile, said the administration was ready to deal with any eventuality and they have made proper plans for the pilgrims coming into the state.
"We are ready to deal with any disaster like situation. All necessary arrangements have been made for the smooth and hassle-free journey of the pilgrims.
"In case the yatra is forced to stop due to some reasons, we are also prepared for that. We have made the arrangements to counter any odd situation," he said. Earlier, the duo also inaugurated the newly set-up Yatri assistance and registration counter at Lakhanpur.
All the yatris coming by their vehicles to the state will be registered at the counter and will be issued a 'traffic check sticker', to be pasted on the front of the vehicle.
The vehicles once pasted with the sticker will not be checked en-route their destinations.
The yatris will also be provided with all sort of information regarding the yatra at these counters – such as the weather report, road clearance and security report, the officials said.