Vaishno Devi Shrine Board launches hi-tech 24×7 pre-paid system for facilitation of pilgrims

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Jammu, Feb 26: Vaishno Devi Shrine Board on Tuesday launched a hi-tech computerised pre-paid system, integrated with CCTV Cameras and Video Conferencing facilities, for hiring Ponies, Pithoos and Palkis for the facilitation of pilgrims to the Holy Cave Shrine.
The facility will be available to the pilgrims round the clock.
This system was inaugurated by BS Tuti, Deputy Inspector General of Police, Udhampur-Reasi; in the presence of Simrandeep Singh, Chief Executive Officer, Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board and others  at a function held at the Spiritual Growth Centre at Katra.
The system has integrated nine Pre-paid Counters from Katra to Bhairon, located at an average distance of 1.75 km from each other at Katra, Banganga, Charan-Paduka, Adhkuwari-I, Adhkuwari-II, Sanjichhat, Parvati Bhawan at Bhawan, Pony Stand Bhawan and Bhairon, from where Yatris will get Pony, Pithoo, Palki services at pre-determined rates.
The Counters will also serve as Grievance Registration Centres for Yatris which will be conveyed to Shrine Board Administration at Katra in escalation format.
RFID readers and scanners installed at these nine locations will get actual number of Ponies on the track on a given day which will help Shrine Board extend appropriate sanitation services and manpower to handle the mule dung collection and its disposal.
Each Yatri will also be provided a helmet, elbow and knee pads to provide preventive cover against any accidental injury.
The Counters will also provide video conferencing facilities to Shrine Board Office in order to monitor the activities and interact with employees at different yatra stations.
The operationalisation of the Pre-paid system will eliminate any chances of over-charging by the service providers and ensure that they charge only as per the rates of Ponies, Pithoos and Palkis fixed by the District Administration, Reasi, for these services.
Incidentally, the District Administration, Reasi, revised the rates for all these services, after 7 years, on February 8. DIG, Udhampur-Reasi Mr Tuti said that this system has many advantages, not just for the pilgrims and service providers but also for Police surveillance and Shrine Board Administration.
He complimented the Shrine Board for taking this much needed step.
The Shrine Board CEO said that the project is an outcome of NGT and Supreme Court Orders on the issue of regulating Mules, capping its count, management of mule dung and overcharging etc.
All the 9 Pre-paid Counters from Banganga to the Bhawan have also become functional which were inaugurated by Vivek Verma, Additional CEO and Naresh Sharma, SDM Bhawan in presence of other officers of the Shrine Board.
Rohit Singh Sambyal, Director, G Max IT Services gave details of the Pre-paid system.
G-Max Services has already been awarded National E-governance award for a similar project executed by it in Kedarnath Dham in Uttarakhand.

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