Snowfall in the higher reaches of Garhwal Himalayas and intermittent rains in lower areas affected the Char Dham yatra on Tuesday with the pilgrimage to the famous Kedarnath shrine suspended till May 16 and yatra to Badrinath halted temporarily.
"Yatra to Kedarnath has been suspended till May 16. Snowfall continues in the shrine area and lower KedarValley is being lashed by showers," Badrinath-Kedarnath Temple Committee CEO V D Singh told PTI.
"Yatra to Badrinath has also been temporarily halted as Nar Narayan Parbat in whose lap the temple is located received fresh snowfall last evening," he said.
While devotees going to the eighth century shrine of Kedarnath have been stopped at Sonprayag and Linchauli about four kms away from the temple, those heading for Badrinath have been asked not to go beyond Joshimath till the weather improves, he said.
Meanwhile, chopper services tentatively scheduled to be launched between Linchauli and Kedarnath from May 12 will now begin from May 17.
Uttarakhand Chief Minister Harish Rawat said the move has been deferred because of the Model Code of Conduct which will remain in force till May 16. Aviation regulator DGCA is also completing other formalities related to clearance for the launch, he said.