Katra, Jammu and Kashmir
|Union territory||Jammu and Kashmir (union territory)|
|Elevation||875 m (2,871 ft)|
|• Other||Dogri, Hindi, Punjabi|
|Time zone||UTC+5:30 (IST)|
Katra or Katra Vaishno Devi, as it is popularly known, is a small town in Reasi district in the union territory of Jammu and Kashmir, India, situated in the foothills of the Trikuta Mountains, where the holy shrine of Vaishno Devi is located. It is located 42 km from the city of Jammu.
There have also been reports of possible oil reserves in the area
As of 2011 Indian Census, Katra had a total population of 9,008, of which 5,106 were males and 3,902 were females. Population within the age group of 0 to 6 years was 1,012. The total number of literates in Katra was 6,841, which constituted 75.9% of the population with male literacy of 79.4% and female literacy of 71.4%. The effective literacy rate of 7+ population of Katra was 85.6%, of which male literacy rate was 89.2% and female literacy rate was 80.8%. The Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes population was 1,925 and 9 respectively. Katra had 1594 households in 2011.
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Katra serves as the base camp for pilgrims who visit Vaishno Devi. It has a thriving tourism industry that offers plenty of hotels, guest houses, restaurants, dhabas, fast-food joints that fit all kinds of budgets. Free accommodation is provided by some registered trusts in the form of "Sarais" for the poor. The number of pilgrims who visit the shrine every year has increased from 1.4 million in 1986 to 8.2 million in 2009. Over the years, a lot has changed, but main attractions include the "bazaar" (market) for buying souvenirs, dryfruits, woolen garments, hosiery, leather jackets, etc. To reach Vaishno Devi, the pilgrims have to register at Katra before starting the trek. By registering, the pilgrims get accident insurance up to 100,000 INR while on the trek of 14 km. There is another trek of 2.5 km from Vaishno Devi temple for Baba Bhaironnath. Electric Vehicles and helicopter services are available for pilgrims. A new ropeway system as just been inaugurated from the Vaishno Devi Bhawan to the Bhairon Baba Mandir, reducing the journey to time to just 3 minutes.The ropeway can carry 800 people every hour.
The town has been connected by roads and state highways for a long time but recently it has also been connected by Indian Railways. Jammu Udhampur Srinagar Baramulla Railway Link connects the Katra railway station of Northern Railways to the rest of Indian railways network. It was inaugurated by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 4 July 2014.
- "Census of India: Katra". www.censusindia.gov.in. Retrieved 4 November 2019.
- "52nd REPORT OF THE COMMISSIONER FOR LINGUISTIC MINORITIES IN INDIA" (PDF). nclm.nic.in. Ministry of Minority Affairs. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 May 2017. Retrieved 18 March 2019.
- FallingRain Map - elevation 875m
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