Pilgrimage to Vaishno Devi temple will resume from today after remaining suspended for nearly five months in view of the coronavirus pandemic. The yatra was suspended on March 18.
Ramesh Kumar, Chief Executive Officer of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board (SMVSB), said in the first week there shall be a cap of 2,000 pilgrims daily. Kumar added that among the 2,000 pilgrims, 1,900 would be from Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) and the remaining 100 from outside the union territory (UT).
Every pilgrim will have to wear a face mask and face cover and install Aarogya Setu App on his/her mobile phone. Pilgrims will also have to undergo thermal scanning at yatra entry points, Kumar said.
Children below 10 years, pregnant women, persons with comorbidities, and those above 60 years have been advised to avoid the pilgrimage.
COVID-19 negative report of pilgrims from outside J&K and also from the red zone districts of the UT will be checked at the helipad and yatra entry points at Darshani Deodi, Banganga, Katra.
Booking and sitting of pilgrims in the Atka Aarti area and Shradha Suman Vishesh Pooja will not be allowed till further orders.
Besides, all supplementary facilities set up by the board such as battery-operated vehicles, passenger ropeway, and helicopter services will operate strictly by following social distancing norms.
In order to avoid congregational gatherings, booking/sitting of pilgrims in the Atka Aarti area/ Shradha Suman Visheh Pooja will not be allowed until further orders.