New Delhi: Railway Minister Mallikarjun Kharge Wednesday said passenger services up to Katra are expected to commence shortly as the construction of rail line on the Udhampur-Katra section has been completed and trial runs begun.

Presenting the interim rail budget for the next fiscal in the Lok Sabha, the lower house of parliament, the minister said the construction on Udhampur-Katra section will enable lakhs of pilgrims from all over the country to reach the foothills of Vaishno Devi shrine directly.

The small town of Katra, located in Udhampur district of Jammu and Kashmir, serves as the base camp for pilgrims visiting the famous shrine of Vaishno Devi.

According to the minister, the national rail project of Kashmir witnessed a major landmark in June last when the 11.2-km tunnel linking Banihal with Qazigund in the valley became operational.

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Free Press Journal