The batch comprising 486 men, 88 women, three children and 50 sadhus left in a motorcade of 16 vehicles from Bhagwati Nagar base camp here at 4:30 AM, a police official said.

With today's batch, so far, as many as 43,222 pilgrims have left from the Jammu base camp for the shrine.

Nearly, three lakh pilgrims have paid obeisance at the cave shrine of Amarnath.

The cave shrine houses an ice stalagmite structure that waxes and wanes with the phases of the moon. Devotees call the stalagmite structure the 'Holy Lingam' and believe it symbolises mystical powers of Lord Shiva.

Jammu-Srinagar national highway is the only surface route for the annual Hindu pilgrimage to the Himalayan cave shrine situated 14,500 feet above the sea level in South Kashmir's Anantnag district.

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