Srinagar, Jul 24 (KINS) The Chhari Mubarak, holy silver mace of Lord Shiva was on Saturday taken to Pahalgam for Bhoomi Pujan and Dhawajarohan ceremonies on the auspicious occasion of Ashad-Purnima (Vyas-Purnima).
With this the age old traditions associated with the annual pilgrimage to holy Amarnath cave shrine in south Kashmir Himalayas commenced on Saturday.
However, the Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB) has cancelled the annual pilgrimage in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic. No yatra was conducted last year due to same reasons while in 2019 the pilgrims were asked to leave and remaining yatra cancelled for security reasons when centre abrogated Article 370 and 35 A on August 5.
“ Bam Bam Bolay” and Har Har Mahadev” rented in the air when Mahant Deependra Giri, carrying the Chhari Mubarak left from Dashnami Akhara near here at around 0530 hrs this morning alongwith a group of sadhus for Pahalgam, where Bhoomi Pujan, Navgrah Pujan and Dhawajarohan were performed on the auspicious occasion of Ashad-Purnima (Vyas-Purnima).
The Chhari Mubarak will return to Deshnami Akhara , Srinagar, in the afternoon. The holy Mace will be taken to Shankarachaiya temple and Sharkadevi temple before starting final journey towards the cave shrine, where final pujan will be held on Rakshabandan.
Mahant Giri said they prayed for peace and prosperity in Jammu and Kashmir besides end to COVID-19.
He had described the decision of the SASB to cancel the pilgrims in view of COVID 19 as an appropriate step. However, he expressed hope that by next year normal pilgrimage will be held.
He had further said that although the decision was not pleasant for the pilgrims, but keeping in view the pandemic and safety of the lives of lakhs of pilgrims who were coming from different parts of the country besides service providers, volunteers and government officials who were to be deployed for the yatra duty it is an appropriate decision.
“I hope by this year next year all the citizens of the country would be fully vaccinated and we can expect normal pilgrimage next year,” he said.
He further said, ”When charri Mubarak shall reach holy cave on Shravanpurnima on August 2, we all shall pray to Amaranth ji to eradicate and wipe out this pandemic and accept our prayers.”
Mahant Giri, carrying the Chhari Mubarak, is leading the pilgrims from Shri Amareshwar temple, Akhara Building, Maisuma in Srinagar to holy cave every year. In 2019 and 2000 when the yatra were cancelled due to pandemic and political uncertainty, the Mahant Giri alongwith Charri and some sadhus were taken in a helicopter to cave shrine. (Source UNI)