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Uttarakhand suspends Char Dham yatra after high court stay order

On Monday, the government issued SOPs for the first phase of Char Dham yatra, in which residents of Chamoli, Rudraprayag and Uttarkashi districts would be allowed only after prior registration and RTPCR/TrueNat/RAT Covid negative test report.

By: Express News Service | Dehradun |
Updated: June 29, 2021 12:01:19 pm
Char Dham board decides to not livestream ceremonies held inside shrinesThe high court had put a stay on the Chardham Yatra on June 28 in view of the risks involved in conducting the pilgrimage amid the pandemic after which the state government had approached the Supreme Court. (PTI Photo)

The Uttarakhand government on Tuesday suspended the Char Dham yatra until further notice, a day after the state high court stayed for four weeks the Cabinet’s decision to allow the yatra for local residents of three districts from July 1.

On Monday, the government issued SOPs for the first phase of Char Dham yatra, in which residents of Chamoli, Rudraprayag and Uttarkashi districts would be allowed only after prior registration and RTPCR/TrueNat/RAT Covid negative test report. The SOPs said all residents of Uttarakhand will be allowed to visit the four shrines in the second phase from July 11, if they are carrying a negative Covid test report.

A bench of Chief Justice Raghvendra Singh Chauhan and Justice Alok Kumar Verma on Monday had issued the stay order while hearing a clutch of PILs related to availability of health infrastructure in the state.

State government spokesperson Subodh Uniyal had told the media that the government will examine the high court order and move the Supreme Court if necessary.

The Uttarakhand Cabinet had on June 25 decided to start Char Dham yatra from July 1 for locals in the districts of Chamoli, Rudraprayag and Uttarkashi, where the shrines are located.

The court has directed the government to ensure that the ceremonies carried out within the sanctum sanctorum of the Char Dham temples be live streamed for the devotees.

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