More than 50 Uttarakhand Chardham pilgrims dead in nearly a fortnight of yatra

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Chardham Yatra Crowd Pushkar Singh Dhami

Dehradun: More than 50 pilgrims have died so far since the start of the Chardham Yatra in Uttarakhand nearly a fortnight ago on May 10.

At a press conference here on Friday, Garhwal Commissioner Vinay Shankar Pandey said, "52 Chardham pilgrims have died so far, mostly due to heart attacks. Most of them were above 60 years." Three devotees died in Gangotri, 12 in Yamunotri, 14 in Badrinath and 23 in Kedarnath, he said.

Medical screening for devotees above 50 years of age has been made mandatory. The screening is being done en route to the Himalayan temples, and pilgrims are being advised not to travel if they are not found medically fit enough, he said.

However, if they still insist on continuing the yatra, they are allowed to go further after filling up a form.

Continuous efforts are being made to further improve the Chardham Yatra arrangements, he said, adding that so far nine lakh 67 thousand 302 devotees have visited the Chardham, he said.

The yatra is going on smoothly at all the four pilgrimages, Pandey said.