Dehradun, Apr 14 (PTI) Badrinath will soon boast new and better set of facilities for pilgrims after the Centre today cleared a project worth Rs 39 crore for improving facilities at the Himalayan shrine.

A changing room, a canteen, a cloak room, a waiting hall equipped with information counters, a car parking lot and a pathway including a bridge for pedestrians on Bamni nala are also to be constructed within the premises of the Himalayan temple, Tourism Secretary Dilip Jawalkar said.

The pedestrian bridge over Bamni nala will be fitted with solar lights and benches will be built on either side of the entire stretch to be called Aastha-path.

The changing room will be built near Tapta Kund and Narad Kund besides construction of covered drains and other arrangements for effective waste management, he said. “The amount will be released in five instalments,” Jawalkar — who is also the nodal officer for the project said Thanking the Centre on behalf of the people of Uttarakhand, Tourism Minister Satpal Maharaj said the clearance of the project paves the way for more and more devotees visiting the shrine in the coming days to avail of better facilities. “Addition of the new facilities will definitely make yatra to the Himalayan shrine more smooth and convenient for pilgrims,” he said.

The yatra begins this year with the opening of the Gangotri and Yamunotri shrines on April 18. The portals of Badrinath are scheduled to be opened on April 30.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.