Former Congress President Rahul Gandhi visited Mata Vaishno Devi temple in Jammu region on Thursday, where he walked from Katra on foot. In the videos shared online, the Congress MP can be seen walking briskly on a 14-km stretch, which leads to the holy shrine. Rahul Gandhi also interacted with the pilgrims

"I have come here to offer prayers to the Mata (mother goddess). I don't want to make any political comments here," Rahul Gandhi told reporters.

Rahul Gandhi can be seen accompanied by his personal security detail even as Congress party workers hold up party flags. The Congress posted videos of Gandhi's visit to the shrine. Congress' J&K unit President Ghulam Ahmed Mir revealed that Gandhi wanted to visit Vaishno Devi for years.

Rahul Gandhi Vaishno Devi visit
Rahul Gandhi at Vaishno Devi

"We have been asking Rahul Gandhi for the past three years. He also wanted to come, but the political situation was such that he cannot visit," Mr Mir was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

Rahul Gandhi will stay there overnight and walk back down the next day. He will also take part in the aarti in the evening.

Rahul Gandhi in J&K

The Congress leader will participate in the party meeting and will address the workers in Jammu. Gandhi, who is on two-day visit to Jammu, will also meet Congress leaders and take feedback of the situation in the Union Territory, particularly after the Taliban capture of Afghanistan. After his Jammu visit, he plans to go to Ladakh.

Rahul Gandhi on his way to shrine of Mata Vaishno Devi
Congress office

Rahul had paid obeisance at the Mata Kheer Bhawani temple in Ganderbal district during his visit last month - his first visit to the Valley since the Centre abrogated Article 370.

(With inputs from IANS)