Amarnath: Barcodes, RFID technology being used to track pilgrims

Jammu: In order to ensure the safety of Amarnath yatris, security agencies are issuing barcode-enabled authority slips to pilgrims and also pasting RFID tags on vehicles that will transport pilgrims and other civilians to and from the pilgrimage site.

These RFID chips will track the movement of the vehicles and will also help drivers get directions if needed. These slips contain important details such as the pilgrims’ photographs and contact numbers.

Speaking to ANI, a pilgrim said, “We feel safe now as the security agencies are tracking our movement every minute. They told us that if we lost our way they will now be able to guide us with this technology. “

“I am going towards Pehelgaon. They will be able to track us now with the help of RFID tags. This technology is helpful as our mobile phone network does not work at the heights,” said Abhinash Mehra, another pilgrim.

CRPF public relations officer (PRO) Ashish Kumar Jha said this year, the Centre has deployed Indian Army officials, paramilitary and state police personnel in an attempt to tighten the security cover through the 46-day long pilgrimage on several routes.

He also said that the RFID tags have made their work easy as they are now able to reach the pilgrims during emergencies.

“One way we are securing the pilgrims by our physical presence on our ground and the second way is via technology- RFID tags. We track the movement of cars through these tags. We first take basic information about the driver and the contact number and put it in the tag. If they ask for help by tracking or if an emergency arises we track their location reach out to them,” said Jha.

Several accidents had taken place during the pilgrimage in the past few years. On July 10, 2017, a bus ferrying Amarnath yatris lost its way and was targetted by terrorists in which eight people lost their lives.

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