Amid tight security, the sixteenth batch of 3,398 pilgrims today left Jammu for the 3,888-metre Amarnath cave shrine of Lord Shiva in the south Kashmir Himalayas. Escorted by the CRPF and police, the batch consisting of 2,535 males, 758 females, 100 sadhus and sadhvis, and five transgenders left in a convoy of 191 vehicles for Baltal and Pahalgam base camps this morning, officials said. With today's batch, a total of 50,028 pilgrims have left Jammu for Amarnath in 16 batches since the yatra began from Jammu on June 28. Over 1,86,853 pilgrims have paid obeisance at the cave shrine till last evening. The yatra will conclude on Shravan Purnima (Raksha Bandhan) on August 7.
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