As preparations begin for the upcoming Char Dham yatra, fresh fissures have appeared on the road connecting Narasingh temple in subsidence-hit Joshimath and Badrinath, according to local activists.
The road, which is a bypass of the Badrinath highway leading to the Himalayan temple, is used for taking pilgrims from Joshimath to Badrinath during the yatra season.
”Fresh cracks have appeared on the road over the past three days,” Joshimath Bachao Sangharsh Samiti (JBSS) spokesman Kamal Raturi told PTI on Monday.
The Public Works Department, Uttarakhand looks after the maintenance of the road. Some cracks have also appeared on the highway between Joshimath and Marwari which is used for pilgrims returning from Badrinath and passes through the main market in Joshimath. However, the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) which maintains the highway is repairing it, Raturi said.
To make the journey of pilgrims to Badrinath safe, the road from the entry point of Joshimath to the gas godown on way to Auli needs to be repaired properly as early as possible, the JBSS spokesman said. Cracks on the roads have led to concern among locals about the safety of the yatra to Badrinath which begins on April 27.
The dates for the reopening of the four Himalayan temples on Char Dham circuit after the winter break have already been announced by the Uttarakhand government. Kedarnath portal opens on April 25 while Gangotri and Yamunotri portals open on April 22. Online registration for the yatra begins from February 21. Preparations are underway to issue a standard operating procedure for the yatra after receiving the guidelines from the Centre, Uttarakhand Tourism and Culture Minister Satpal Maharaj said.