KATRA: Governor N N Vohra, Chairman of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board, held a meeting with Umang Narula, Chief Executive Officer and other officers of the Board to ascertain whether pilgrims had started using the new 7 Km long Tarakote Marg from Katra to Adhkuwari.
According to an official spokesperson, Anshul Garg, Addl CEO, informed that the Tarakote Marg was opened on Sunday for the on-foot pilgrims amidst chanting of vedic mantras and performing of havan, yagya and other rituals. “Prasad and Chunnies were presented to the first lot of Yatris who walked on the new track,” he said.
He said the prime minister of India has accepted the governor’s request to formally inaugurate the Tarakote Marg on May 19, 2018.
The spokesperson said Anshul Garg, Additional CEO, and other officers, engineers and staff of the Shrine Board, and a significant number of pilgrims were present when the track was operationalised on Sunday.
“About one thousand pilgrims who used the new path expressed their appreciation of this picturesque track and many of them were seen taking photographs to capture the scenic view and the beautiful ambience of the floating fountains at Tarakote. They were particularly appreciative of the ramp style track with a gentle gradient which is easy to walk. The pilgrims were happy to observe that the Board has equipped the Tarakote Marg with modern infrastructure and all the required logistics and facilities,” he said.
This track, the spokesperson said, has 6 food outlets which offer hygienic food, 16 water points for providing filtered quality drinking water while more are being added, attractively designed shelter sheds for protection of the pilgrims from the vagaries of weather and shooting stones. “Besides, the Tarakote Marg has a fully equipped Medical Unit and 7 Toilet Blocks which also have adequate facilities for the convenience of elderly pilgrims and the specially-abled,” he said.
He said the view points have been established at conspicuous locations so that the pilgrims can have an eye catching view of Katra, the base town for the pilgrimage, and the area around. “Benches have been provided at regular intervals for the convenience of pilgrims,” he said.
He said the entire track has been landscaped and more than 46000 ornamental plants, herbs, flowering and avenue trees having been planted to improveambience of the track. “Adequate arrangements have been made for ensuring round the clock sanitation in addition to safety and security of the pilgrims,” he said.
“The Tarakote Marg has been linked with the existing Banganga-Adhkuwari track at a point which takes off near Gulshan Langar. The 1.5 km link road provides the Yatris the choice of walking on the existing Banganga-Adhkuwari track or on the purely pedestrian Tarakote Marg, once they have crossed the Darshani Deodi,” the spokesperson added.