Karnataka: Aadhaar Card Mandatory For Char Dham Yatra And Subsidy

| September 1 , 2017 , 13:48 IST

The Congress led Karnataka government has mandated Aadhaar card for going on the annual Hindu pilgrimage tour 'Char Dham Yatra' in Uttarakhand's Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamunotri.

The government's move comes as an effort to prevent the misuse of the Rs 20,000 subsidy provided to the pilgrims. According to the revised guidelines, only Aadhaar card will be acceptable as 'proof of domicile' for the subsidy applicants.

A senior official in the religious endowments department told a media outlet: "Every year, around 1,000-1,500 people, who are permanent residents of the state, avail the travel subsidy being given for Char Dham Yatra. But the number of pilgrims is likely to increase this year as a lot of travel operators have been luring more people by pointing to the travel subsidy being provided by the government. Since there's a high probability of subsidy amount being misused or people submitting false travel documents, the government has decided to insist on Aadhaar card."

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The current congress led government under the leadership of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah had rolled out the subsidy back in 2014 in order promote Hindu pilgrimage among the economically disadvantaged people.

Notably, the previous BJP government had announced a Rs 30,000 subsidy for Mansarovar Yatra.

The pilgrims can avail the subsidy only if they undergo the tour through government recognised travel agencies. The pilgrims have to apply for the subsidy within four months of the tour. They have to produce an affidavit from the agency, Uttarakhand Tourism Council issued pilgrim card, along with several other documents to the muzrai commissioner.

After verification of the documents, the subsidy amount is transferred to their bank accounts through RTGS, however, pilgrims who have claimed for the subsidy are not eligible for another time.

While government employees were not eligible for this subsidy in the past, given they get leave travel allowance (LTA), they can avail the subsidy under the new guidelines.

P Reddy Nagendra Kumar

procedure to avail subsidy from Karnataka Government