Statistics released by the state government show that more than 200 people have been killed in the ongoing Char Dham Yatra in Uttarakhand. It added that the leading causes of death were medical foods among elderly pilgrims.
Heavy rains and subsequent landslides are a big challenge for the state government in keeping the pilgrimage smooth.
The pilgrimage began on May 3 and will conclude the following October. So far, the number of pilgrims who have undertaken the expedition has crossed 250,000 but the number has dropped by a week.
According to statistics released by the State Emergency Operations Center in Dehradun, 95 pilgrims were killed in Kedarnath Yatra, 51 in Badrinath Yatra, 13 in Gangotri and 42 in Yamunotri.
Shailaja Bhatt, the Uttarakhand General Secretary (Health), said, “The department has been conducting passenger health checks in nine places for the first time and is regularly providing health advice through brochures and other methods. Pilgrims, especially the elderly, are being made aware of the dangers of pilgrimage.
He said 12 doctors have been deployed along the Char Dham routes. “Sick pilgrims are being rushed to top medical centers by heli-ambulance for timely treatment in case of an emergency. Death is the leading cause of cardiovascular diseases so far. Pilgrims with medical history are being persuaded not to take the next trip and if they are determined to continue their journey, they are being judged, ”he said.
According to Bhatt, 20 temporary health centers have been established along the pilgrimage routes, where 178 more doctors have been deployed – 66% more compared to the 2019 expedition.