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Holy mace reaches Amarnath

August 11, 2008 18:44 IST

Amidst all the brouhaha over the Amarnath land row, the chhari mubarak or the holy mace of Shiva reached Pahalgam on Monday afternoon, marking the final phase of the ongoing two-month Amarnath yatra, official sources said.

Carried by its custodian Mahant Deependri Giri,the mace left its abode at Dashnami Akhara at Budshah Chowk in Srinagar [Images] on Monday morning and reached Pahalgam in the afternoon, sources said.

Special prayers were offered at various temples en route to Pahalgam, including at the temple township of Mattan. Nearly 200 sadhus accompanied the holy mace in a fleet of vehicles from Budshah chowk to Pahalgam.

After spending three nights at various halts along the 46-km traditional route, the holy mace will reach the cave on August 16 marking the end of the annual pilgrimage. Meanwhile, sources said that the pilgrimage is going on smoothly from both the Pahalgam and Baltal routes.

A record number of 5.35 lakh pilgrims visited the holy cave since the commencement of the yatra in June this year. However, 68 persons, mostly elderly pilgrims, died during the yatra.

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