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HomeCyber CrimePilgrims To Vaishno Devi Beware! Scammers Can Cheat You During Online Bookings

Pilgrims To Vaishno Devi Beware! Scammers Can Cheat You During Online Bookings

NEW DELHI: Ever since the online booking for Vaishno Devi Yatra was made mandatory after the January 1 stampede at the shrine, unscrupulous elements have defrauded some pilgrims under the guise of online helicopter bookings.

Ramesh Kumar, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board (SMVDSB), filed a formal complaint with the Crime Branch of the Jammu and Kashmir Police after receiving complaints from certain pilgrims over the booking of fraudulent helicopter tickets by some cheats.

Despite the issuance of an alert through the print media and display in the shape of flex at prominent locations the SMVDSB, the CEO has taken serious note of complaints about some unscrupulous elements reserving bogus helicopter tickets for pilgrims by using their websites/travel portals and travel agents, etc.

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The CEO has informed and urged pilgrims that the sale of helicopter tickets for pilgrims travelling from Katra to Sanjichhat and back is solely the responsibility of SMVDB, and that no agent, agency, or person has been authorised to use the Shrine Board’s name to sell or undertake online bookings for any services provided by Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board, Katra.

All online services provided by the Shrine Board are only available through the shrine board’s official website: and the MATA VAISHNO DEVI APP.

Ramesh Kumar also stated that any misrepresentation of the Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board by any person or agency will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

The SMVDSB had made online registration essential to continue into Bhawan from Katra after the worst-ever stampede at the cave shrine on the morning of January 1.

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After the first-ever stampede at the cave shrine’s Bhawan, in which 12 worshippers were killed and 15 others were injured, the decision to close all registration desks was made.

During the SMVDSB meeting, it was determined that pilgrims who had completed an online registration form would be allowed to participate in the Yatra.

It was also highlighted that technology should be used appropriately and that a Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) tracking system be put in place for effective crowd and queue control.

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