Tight security at Vaishno Devi shrine ahead of "Navratri"

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Katra, Sept 18 (ANI): Security has been beefed up at the famous Vaishno Devi Temple near Jammu ahead of the nine-day "Navratri" festival.

Paramilitary and police personnel are patrolling and frisking people at important points in Katra, which is thronged by thousands of devotees every year, especially during Navratri.

The nine-day Navratri festival will begin from Saturday and the authorities claim to be in full control of the situation.

"There is much fanfare in Katra during Navratra festival and the inflow of tourists also rises manifold during those days. We have made proper security arrangements. We have taken the help of the CRPF. This time, we also have one contingent of Haryana police," said Ashok Sharma, Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP).

The devotees making their way to the shrine were also put through rigorous checking, a routine, exercised with extra care, considering the sensitive nature of the shrine and keeping recent threats in mind.

The devotees complied without complaining.

"There was not much trouble during the security check. We were checked several times but we did not face any problem. It was all done very safely," said Vijay Kumar, a devotee.

'Navratri', which literally means nine nights, is observed twice a year.

The festival lasts for nine days in honour of nine manifestations of Durga, goddess of power ,and fall in the months of April-May and September-October.

It is believed that during the Navratri, Goddess Durga descends on earth to rid it of the demons and blesses her devotees with happiness and prosperity. (ANI)

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