In what may leave the pilgrims infuriated, the National Green Tribunal on Wednesday banned the chanting of mantras at the Amarnath temple, along with a slew of other orders to be implemented by the Shri Amarnathji Shrine Board (SASB).

The green court’s order comes after it wrapped the temple board last month for failing to provide adequate infrastructure facilities to pilgrims, and had directed it submit a status report on the same in the first week of December.

As per the orders by an NGT bench headed by chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar, there should be no ringing of bells in the cave temple. Moreover, devotees cannot chant mantras or ‘jaykaras’ in the Amarnath cave.

Also, they cannot carry their mobile phones or belongings beyond the last check post. The tribunal has asked the shrine authorities to consider building a separate room where people could keep their belongings.

Directing the board for strict implementation of its orders, the tribunal also said that there should be a single queue of devotees walking towards the main cave from the last check post.

The orders by the NGT have invited strong criticism from Twitterati who have termed the green court’s move as ‘insensitive’.

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