KATRA, INDIA, February 14, 2013 (The Hindu Businessline): By mid-2013, Katra, a destination in Jammu near Vaishno Devi temple, one of the main Hindu pilgrim destinations, is set to become accessible by rail.
At present, the nearest railhead to Katra is Jammu, from where people travel by road for about two hours along the hills to reach Katra.
The train journey will be more comfortable, cheaper and picturesque compared to the road option, though the time saved may not be significant, as the train will chug to Katra through Udhampur.
About 20,000-25,000 people visit Katra everyday, according to industry estimates. Along with a train connection to Katra, pilgrims will get accommodation as well as shopping and food outlets on the first floor of the railway station. Tickets for the shrine will also be available at the station.
"By May, a 25-km (15.5 mile) rail track between Katra and Udhampur should be ready for trial run. Udhampur is already connected to Jammu," said B.D Garg, Chief Administrative Officer, Udhampur Srinagar Baramullah Railway Link (USBRL), Northern Railway.