Senior separatist leader and chairperson Democratic Freedom Party, Shabir Ahmad Shah Wednesday said demanded restricting Amarnath Yatra to minimum time period keeping in view the fragile environmental condition.

“We’re not against the Yatra but the ‘aggressive’ way the pilgrimage is being conducted and its duration extended is totally unacceptable for us. We also reject the point that Amarnath Yatra boosts economy of the State at a large scale,” Shabir Shah said addressing his party workers in Budgam.

He said that arrival of limitless pilgrims to a mountainous region largely affects the surroundings and leaves negative effects upon the overall environment of the State. “Our water bodies and forests have been polluted to very much extent giving rise to health hazards including Hepatitis. Experts have cited the melting of glaciers and deforestation as reasons behind floods in the Valley,” DFP statement quoted Shah as having said.

Citing the example of Uttarakhand, Shabir Ahmad Shah said, “we demand that the Yatra should be conducted on the same pattern – short and limited.” “But here, it is entirely contrary – limitless and timeless, which is unacceptable.”

“We suggest all the concerned that they should (without any bias) restrict the time frame of Yatra and limit the pilgrims lest we face some serious environmental repercussions,” he demanded.


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