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Amarnath Yatra Implements Ban on Junk Food for Pilgrims; SASB Releases List of Permitted and Banned Items

In a significant step toward promoting healthier dietary practices, the Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB) made an announcement on Sunday regarding the exclusion of certain food items from the menu served to Yatris during this year’s Himalayan pilgrimage.

Notable additions to the prohibited list include halwa puri, samosas, jalebi, gulab jamun, and other similar options.

The highly anticipated Amarnath Yatra, spanning a duration of 62 days, is scheduled to commence on July 1.

To accommodate the needs of the pilgrims, SASB officials disclosed their plans to establish over 120 langars (community kitchens) along the Pahalgam and Baltal routes leading to the revered cave shrine.

In light of prioritizing the health of the participants, an official statement was released by the SASB detailing the permitted and prohibited meals and food items to be offered at the langars. A resolute stance was taken against serving any form of junk or fried food across the designated 120 langars.

Forbidden items and banned foods:

Among the banned food items, poori, bathura, pizza, burger, stuffed parantha, dosa, fried roti, bread with butter, cream-based foods, pickle, chutney, fried papad, chowmein, and other fried or fast foods were included. Furthermore, cold drinks, karrah halwa, jalebi, gulab jamun, laddu, khoya burfi, rasgulla, and other halwai items, along with snacks high in fat and salt like chips/kurkure, matthi, namkeen mixture, pakora, samosa, fried dry fruits, and deep-fried items were strictly forbidden.

Non-vegetarian foods, alcohol, tobacco, gutka, pan masala, cigarettes, and other intoxicants also fell under the umbrella of the banned items.

On the other hand, the approved menu encompasses a selection of nutritious options, including cereals, pulses, green vegetables, green salad, fruits and sprouts, rice, jaggery, sambar, idli, uttapam, poha, herbal tea, coffee, low-fat curd, sharbat, lemon squash/water, figs, raisins, apricots, and various dry fruits.

Additionally, the Director of Health Services in Jammu and Kashmir issued a directive to all relevant officials, prohibiting the approval or forwarding of leave applications from doctors and paramedical staff during the yatra period.

The decision to enforce restrictions on the availability of junk food and unhealthy meals during the Amarnath Yatra signifies the SASB’s unwavering commitment to safeguarding the well-being and health of the pilgrims, ensuring their access to nourishing sustenance throughout their spiritual expedition.

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