The state of Jammu and Kashmir keeps surfacing in the news every now and then because of terrorist incursions in the valley. Now suddenly, the state has come under the scanner. There is robust movement of troops and additional troops have been deployed in the valley and dismissed as normal routine. Howevver, later reports found Army personnel stating that the Amarnath Yatra was riddled with security issues and the pilgrims’ safety was at stake.  The annual Amarnath Yatra has been suspended due to security reasons.

However, troops movement is very visible across the state and now the 43-day long ‘Machail Mata Yatra’ in Kishtwar district in Jammu and Kashmir has been suspended. Tens of thousands of devotees visit the scenic Paddar valley, known for it’s sapphire mines,  and pay obeisance at the holy shrine of Goddess Durga in Machail village of Kishtwar.  The journey involves an arduous 30 kilometer route.

Hundreds of tourists and Amarnath Yatra pilgrims are looking to leave the Kashmir Valley even as the government on Friday asked all tourists and pilgrims to cut short their stay and make arrangements to return home. This was an unprecedented advisory by the Government in the face of terror threats according to intelligence inputs.The government advisory indicated that terrorists backed by the Pakistan Army were trying to disrupt the Amarnath pilgrimage.

The Director-General of Civil Aviation asked the airport authorities to operate additional flights to enable tourists and pilgrims to return home. Scores of vehicles could be seen taking tourists and pilgrims out of the valley. The Amarnath pilgrims in the Pahalgam base camp found it easier to pack up and leave as the south Kashmir base camp found it easier to connect to the Jawahar Tunnel, which is the exit point from the valley.

The advisory caused excessive panic that spread around soon. Locals were seen queuing outside local departmental stores, grocery shops, pharmacies and  ATMs to stock up rations and other essentials. There was a huge rush outside petrol pumps too.

Opposition leader Omar Abdullah of the National Conference party said that people staying in hotels in Gulmarg were asked to vacate  hours after the government advisory was put out. State transport buses were being dpeloyed to pull out people from Gulmarg and Pahalgam? The former Chief Minister wondered if the threat was to Amarnath  Yatra, why tourists from Gulmarg were asked to vacate the region?

Hundreds of tourists and Amarnath Yatra pilgrims are looking to leave the Kashmir Valley even as the government on Friday asked all tourists and pilgrims to cut short their stay and make arrangements to return home. This was an unprecedented advisory by the Government in the face of terror threats according to intelligence inputs.The government advisory indicated that terrorists backed by the Pakistan Army were trying to disrupt the Amarnath pilgrimage.

The Director-General of Civil Aviation asked the airport authorities to operate additional flights to enable tourists and pilgrims to return home. Scores of vehicles could be seen taking tourists and pilgrims out of the valley. The Amarnath pilgrims in the Pahalgam base camp found it easier to pack up and leave as the south Kashmir base camp found it easier to connect to the Jawahar Tunnel, which is the exit point from the valley.

The advisory caused excessive panic that spread around soon. Locals were seen queuing outside local departmental stores, grocery shops, pharmacies and  ATMs to stock up rations and other essentials. There was a huge rush outside petrol pumps too.

Opposition leader Omar Abdullah of the National Conference party said that people staying in hotels in Gulmarg were asked to vacate  hours after the government advisory was put out. State transport buses were being deployed to pull out people from Gulmarg and Pahalgam? The former Chief Minister wondered if the threat was to Amarnath  Yatra, why tourists from Gulmarg were asked to vacate?

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