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Chardham Yatra concludes, record 56 lakh pilgrims visit Himalayan shrines this time

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The Himalayan shrines saw a record number of pilgrims at 56,13,635 as of Saturday, an increase of 10 lakh compared to the previous year. DEHRADUN:  The world-famous Chardham Yatra concluded on Saturday with the portals of Shri Badrinath Dham closed for the winter season. The Himalayan shrines saw a record number of pilgrims at 56,13,635 as of Saturday, an increase of 10 lakh compared to the previous year.  Dr Harish Gaur, media in-charge of Badri Kedar Temple Committee, said, "On the fifth day of Panch Puja on Saturday, the rawal of the temple himself wears female costumes and takes Mata Lakshmi to the sanctum sanctorum of Badrinath temple." "It is believed that it is forbidden to touch Goddess Lakshmi by 'other-man', so Rawal himself wears a female dress and installs the idol of Mata Lakshmi in the sanctum sanctorum of the temple," Dr Gaur said. The Chardham Yatra also concluded on Saturday. "A record 56,13,635 pilgrims came to Uttarakhand to visit Chardham and Hemkund Sahib this year, which is an unprecedented record in itself as well as more than 10 lakh pilgrims 4627292 who came during last year's Chardham Yatra period," Badri Kedar Temple Committee president Ajendra Ajay told The New Indian Express. Meanwhile, a spokesperson of the committee said, "This time 735244 pilgrims visited Yamunotri Dham, 9,05,174 to Gangotri Dham, 1961025 to Kedarnath Dham, 1834729 to Badrinath Dham and 177463 to Hemkund Sahib".

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