IB issues terror threat alert for Amarnath Yatra

IB issues terror threat  alert for Amarnath Yatra

The Intelligence Bureau (IB) has issued an alert on a possible terror strike on pilgrims during the Amarnath Yatra which begins on Friday. Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had earlier termed the fears “exaggerated.”

Pilgrimage to the Amarnath cave shrine, which will begin simultaneously from Baltal and Pahalgam on Friday, is scheduled to end on August 21.

The alert suggested that security forces should be vigilant as militants might have sneaked into the Valley from across the border. Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde had earlier acknowledged threat of a terror strike on the annual event. Shinde, however, had assured that the government would send additional forces for ensuring safety of the people visiting the holy shrine.

The Army had launched an operation to sanitise the route and combed the area.
Last week, Army chief Gen Bikram Singh said though threats existed, security forces have plans to thwart any attack.

Over 3,000 pilgrims in the first batch, including 563 women and 37 children, have started for the shrine from Jammu under heavy security.

Security officials said there are threats from the Lashkar-e-Toiba and the Hizbul Mujahideen. Militants had attacked a convoy, killing eight jawans, on the eve of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s recent visit to Kashmir.

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