Yatra 2020 to start on
21st July 2020 till 3rd August.
Governor Jammu & Kashmir & Chairman of the Shri
Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB), Satya Pal Malik,
presided over the 36th Board Meeting held today at Raj
Bhavan, Jammu. Regarding the duration and date of
commencement of Yatra 2020, based on the approach set
out by the Sri Sri Ravi Shankar Committee, which had
been set up to advise the Board regarding the duration
and schedule of future Yatras, the Board, keeping in
view the foremost concern of the safety and security of
the pilgrims, decided that a 46 day Yatra would commence
on 21st July, 2020, an auspicious day of Masik Shivratri
as per Hindu Calendar and conclude on Shravan Purnima (Raksha
Bandhan) on 3rd August, 2020.
Those present at the meeting included Sh. BVR
Subrahmanyam, Chief Secretary and Members of the Board
including Swami Avdheshanand Giri Ji Maharaj; Shri D.C.
Raina; Pt. Bhajan Sopori; Prof. Anita Billawaria; Dr.
Sudershan Kumar; Dr. C.M. Seth; Mrs. Tripta Dhawan and
Prof. Vishwamurti Shastri. Sh. K.K Sharma, Consultant
Yatri Welfare, Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board also
participated in the meeting as a special invitee. Shri
Umang Narula, Chief Executive Officer; Sh. Anup Kumar
Soni, Additional Chief Executive Officer; and other
senior officers of the Shrine Board also attended the
The Board deliberated at length on the number of Yatris
who would be allowed to register, date-wise and
route-wise, for this year's Yatra. Considering the
carrying capacity of the existing tracks and other
available infrastructure in the Yatra area, the Board
decided that 7,500 Yatris, per day per each of the two
routes, excluding Yatris who would travel by
helicopters, would be allowed to secure Advance
Registration for the pilgrimage.
Board further directed wide publicity be given through
the electronic and print media, informing the intending
Yatris to timely secure the prescribed Compulsory Health
Certificates issued by the Doctors/ Hospitals nominated
by the State or UTs in which they reside and only
thereafter proceed to seek Advance Registration from the
nearest located designated Bank which would issue the
pilgrim a Yatra Permit which shall be valid for the
specified date and route. Board also advised CEO to
appeal to all the potential pilgrims to consult their
doctors before embarking on the pilgrimage. CEO shall
also widely publicize that no person below the age of 13
years and above the age of 75 years shall be permitted
to undertake the pilgrimage.
The Board directed CEO to take timely steps for ensuring
uninterrupted telecom connectivity in the Yatra area
during Yatra 2020. Appreciating the important services
rendered by the Langar Organizations, the Board looked
to their continued support during Yatra 2020.
The Board directed CEO to caution all potential pilgrims
to particularly take into account the difficult climate
and terrain in the high altitude region of the Yatra and
prepare themselves fully before embarking on the
pilgrimage. The Board also requested the intending
pilgrims to make themselves physically fit for the
arduous Yatra by taking regular walk and exercise. As in
the past, the awareness campaign would be launched with
the cooperation and support of the Ministry of
Information and Broadcasting and all information
relating to Yatra will be placed on the Board's Website
Noting the Chairman's direction for sustained efforts
being made to further improve the facilities to be
provided to the pilgrims this year, the Board reviewed
the Action Plan drawn up for the conduct of Yatra 2020,
particularly the arrangements which are being made for
providing medical care, sanitation facilities,
installation of the railings at all vulnerable points
along each of the two routes, measures being take to
preserve the environment of the Yatra area by ensuring
removal of garbage in a scientific and environment
There is famous Rigvedic Verse that says "Ekam Sat "
that is "There is one Being ,the sages call Him by many
names." The God (Parmeshwar) has three deities who carry
on the world .This is Known as Holy Trinity. Brahma- the
creator, Vishnu - the perpetuator of life and Shiva
(Mahesh ) -the purifier and perpetuator of good and
destroyer of evil. Rig Veda refer Shiva as Rudra as in
its following verse . "We Worship Tryambaka (Rudra) ,
Who spread Fragrance and Increases Nourishment , May He
release me ,like the cucumber from its stem , From
Mortal Life , But not From Immorality . "(Rig Veda
Mandal VII Sukta 59 and Mantra 12)
The Amarnath Cave has special significance .
This is The Cave which was chosen by Bhole Shankar for
narrating the secrets of immortality and creation of
Universe to Maa Parvati ji . The story goes like this .
Centuries ago Maa Parvati asked Shiv ji to let her know
why and when He started wearing the beads of heads (
Mund Mala) . Bhole Shankar replied when ever you are
born I add one more head in my beads . Maa Parvati said
," My Lord, my body is destroyed every time and I die
again and again, but you are Immortal. Please let me
know the secret of this ." Bhole Shankar replied that it
is due to Amar Katha ."
Maa Parvati insisted
that she may be told that secret. For long Shiva ji
continued postponing . Finally on consistent
demand from Maa Parvati He made up his mind to tell the
immortal secret . He started for lonely place where no
living being could listen it . He choose Amarnath Cave .
In preparation to that He left His Nandi ( The Bull
which He used to ride ) at Pahalgam (Bail gaon) . At
Chandanwari He released Moon from his hairs (Jataon). At
the banks of Lake Sheshnag He released the snakes . He
decided to leave his Son Ganesha at Mahagunas Parvat (Mahaganesh
Hill ) . At Panjtarni, Shivji left the Five Elements
behind (Earth , Water, Air , Fire and Sky) which make
living being . He is the Lord of these elements. It is
believed that as a symbol of sacrificing the earthly
world , Shivaji and Maa Parvati had Tandav Dance . After
leaving behind all these, Bhole Shankar enters the Holy
Amarnath Cave along with Parvati Maa . Lord Shiva takes
his Samadhi on the Deer Skin and concentrate . To ensure
that no living being is able to hear the Immortal Tale ,
He created Rudra named Kalagni and ordered him to spread
fire to eliminate every living thing in and around the
Holy Cave . After this He started narrating the secret
of immortality to Maa Parvati . But as a matter of
chance one egg which was lying beneath the Deer skin
remained protected . It is believed to be non living and
more over it was protected by Shiva -Parvati Asan (Bed)
. The pair of pigeons which were born out of this egg
became immortal having listened the secret of
immortality (Amar Katha).
Many pilgrims report seeing the pair of pigeons when
they trek the arduous route to pay their obeisance
before the Ice-Lingam (the phallic symbol of Shiva).
Discovery of Holy Cave
The story narrated by people about the discovery of this
Holy Cave is of a Gujjar ( shepherd) Buta Malik . He is
given the credit of discovering this Holy Cave . Story
goes like this , that a saint gave Buta Malik a bag full
of Coal. On reaching his home when he opened the bag ,
to his utter surprise the bag was full of gold coins .
This made him overwelmed with joy. He ran to thank the
Saint . But, what he found was that the Saint had
disappeared . Instead , he found The Holy Cave and Shiv
Lingam there in . He announced the discovery of this to
the Villagers. Then onwards this has become the sacred
place of Pilgrimage .
The ancient epics narrate an other story which goes like
this. The valley of Kashmir was under water .It was a
big lake. Kashyap Rishi drained the water through number
of rivers and rivulets . In those days Bhrigu Rishi came
that way on a visit to The Himalyas. He was the first to
have Darshans of this Holy Cave . When people heard of
the Lingam, Amarnath for them became Shiva's abode and a
Centre of pilgrimage . Since then Lacs of devotees
perform the pilgrimage through tough terrain and avail
The trek to Amarnath, in the month of sharavan ( July -
August) has the devout flock to this incredible shrine,
where the image of Shiva, in the form of a Lingam, is
formed naturally of an Ice Stalagmite, which waxes and
wanes with the Moon's cycle . By its side are
fascinating, two more Ice Lingams, that of Maa Parvati
and of their son, Ganesha .
The climatic conditions are very uncertain . Rain or
snowfall may take place at any time or place during the
Yatra . It is to be particularly noted that abrupt
changes in temperature might occur . Sunny weather may
turn into rain / snow fall in a short time .
The temperature may fall upto -5 degree C .
How to Reach
One can reach the first part of journey through
Air: The nearest aerodrome is Srinagar. Srinagar
is a beautiful valley having world famous sights to see,
such as Dal Lake, Nagina Lake, Shankaracharya Temple,
Mughal Gardens and what not. It is the most sought after
tourist place. It is also known as "Paradise on earth".
Srinagar is summer capital of Jammu & Kashmir. There are
daily flights to Srinagar from Delhi and Jammu. On some
week days flights also pickup passengers from Chandigarh
and Amritsar .
Rail: Jammu is the nearest Railway Station .
Jammu is winter Capital of Jammu & Kashmir. Jammu is a
beautiful city and is also known as "CITY OF TEMPLES".
One may visit old temples such as Raghunath Temple ,
Mahadev Mandir and other temples . It is well connected
with all stations of India. The various trains coming to
Jammu are listed here below.
Road : Jammu and Srinagar are also connected
through road. Buses and Taxies are also available for
this part of the journey .These can be hired on daily as
well as full tour basis.