Reasi : In a landmark meeting, Hotel & Restaurant Association Katra led a delegation to engage with Deputy Commissioner Reasi Vishesh Mahajan. The discussions centered on the enhancement of Mata Vaishno Devi pilgrimage experience by developing scenic aesthetic surroundings, development of parks, view points, provision of best civic amenities including quality power and water supply, besides installation of signboards, railings etc.
Delegation underscored the need for a cohesive strategy, advocating for the joint planning of Mata Vaishno Devi and Shiv Khori Yatras, while highlighting the tremendous potential of twin pilgrimages for attracting pilgrims and generating local employment.
Responding to the suggestions, the Deputy Commissioner unveiled an ambitious 30-year plan to propel religious and eco-tourism in Katra, envisioning it as India’s one of the premier pilgrim destinations by 2050. A key component of this vision is the development of the Mata Vaishno Devi Parikrama route along Trikuta Hill, aimed at elevating the spiritual journey for devotees.
To boost the local economy, emphasis was placed on promoting indigenous products such as rajma, Kalari, wild mushrooms, and similar items. The plan incorporates sustainable strategies to integrate these products into the overall tourism experience.
Addressing infrastructure concerns, DC Mahajan outlined comprehensive plans for traffic and building designs to accommodate the increasing number of pilgrims. He stressed the importance of rainwater harvesting to tackle water scarcity, aligning with eco-friendly practices.
Advocating collaborative efforts, the DC urged stakeholders to contribute to making Katra a metropolitan city and India’s premier pilgrim destination. Diverse facilities and services catering to various interests were highlighted as essential.
Recognizing the transformative potential of these initiatives, DC Reasi announced the formation of a dedicated team to study stakeholders’ needs and aspects, working towards a comprehensive plan to realize the 2050 vision.
Expressing optimism about the transformative journey ahead, Deputy Commissioner Vishesh Mahajan called on all stakeholders to actively participate in shaping Katra’s future and entire district Reasi, solidifying its position as India’s top pilgrim destination. The meeting saw the presence of prominent figures such as SDM Katra Deepak Dubey, District Information Officer Rajinder Digra, Chairman Shyam Lal Kesar, Sr. Vice President Virender Kesar, Vice President Nishant Sharma, and other key members of civil society.