Amarnath Yatra pilgrims and tourists have been advised by the Jammu and Kashmir government to cut short their stay in the Kashmir Valley “immediately” and go back, in an unprecedented note issued against the backdrop of intel inputs of terror threats.
“Keeping in view the latest intelligence inputs of terror threats, with specific targeting of the Amarnath Yatra, and given the prevailing security situation in the Kashmir Valley, in the interest of safety and security of the tourists and Amarnath Yatris, it is advised that they may curtail their stay in the valley immediately and take necessary measures to return as soon as possible,” the state government said in a statement.
The advisory came shortly after the army and the state police, in a joint press conference, said there were “confirmed intelligence reports” that terrorists backed by the Pakistan army were trying to disrupt the Amarnath Yatra.
“In the last three-four days, there were confirmed intelligence reports that terrorists backed by Pakistan and its army is trying to disrupt Amarnath Yatra and based on that a thorough search was conducted. We had major successes in these searches,” said Chinar Corps Commander Lt General KJS Dhillon.
Among the army’s finds were a landmine with Pakistan ordnance factory markings and an M-24 American sniper rifle with a telescope, the officer said. The yatra route was being “sanitized for three days”, he disclosed.
Lt General Dhillon said “direct involvement of the Pakistan Army including mines and ammunition had been recovered.”