|Elevation||656 m (2,152 ft)|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5.30)|
Kalka (Hindi: कालका) is a town in the Panchkula district of Haryana, India. The name of the town is derived from the goddess Kali. The town is situated in the foothills of the Himalayas and is a gateway to the neighbouring state of Himachal Pradesh. It is on the National Highway 22 between Chandigarh and Shimla, and is the terminus of the Kalka-Shimla Railway. To the south of Kalka is Pinjore, and the industrial town of Parwanoo (Himachal Pradesh) is to the north on the NH 22. Industrial development has led to a continuous urban belt from Pinjore to Parwanoo, but Kalka remains largely unaffected by these developments. Nearby is Chandimandir Cantonment where the Western Command of the Indian army is based. In 2013 it has come under the jurisdiction of Panchkula Municipal Corporation and its municipal committee has been dissolved.
Kalka was acquired by British India from the Princely state of Patiala in 1843 as a depot for Simla, the summer capital of the Raj. It became the junction for the Delhi-Ambala-Kalka, and the Kalka - Simla railways. By 1901, the town, administered as a notified area, had a population of 7,045, a railway workshop, and was a market for ginger and turmeric. The Kalka municipal committee was created on 11 April 1933.
Kalka experiences a subtropical climate, with a monsoon season from late June to early October. The summer starts in mid-April and temperatures peak during May and June. This is followed by the monsoon season, which is accompanied by a drop in temperature and an increase in humidity. Temperatures remain moderate in October and November, but start falling towards the end of November. Winter lasts through December, January and February, with temperatures lowest in early January. Kalka also receives some rainfall from Western Disturbance, near the end of winter. Winter season, despite being chilly, is mostly free of fog unlike most north Indian cities in the plains.
|Climate data for Kalka|
|Average high °C (°F)||18.1
|Average low °C (°F)||6.2
|Rainfall mm (inches)||73
Kalka is situated along a slope. This makes it somewhat difficult to commute on foot. Local transport (within Kalka) is by shared auto-rickshaws. These autos ply to a distance of around 15–20 km. There are also shared cabs (not the luxury ones) for distances up to 25–30 km. Government and private buses are also very common for commuting to nearby towns. Many intercity govt buses start or pass through Kalka, connecting it with Chandigarh, Ambala, Delhi, Shimla and many other cities.
Kalka railway station is the northern terminal of the Delhi-Kalka line of Northern Railway, Indian Rail (Station code KLK) serving as terminal station for broad gauge line (towards Chandigarh) and narrow gauge line (towards Shimla). Direct trains on broad gauge, connect to Delhi, Mumbai, Howrah etc.
Kalka Shimla Railway
According to 2011 census the population of Kalka is 30,314
Places of interest
Kali Mata Temple
The ancient temple of the Hindu goddess Kali is situated on the National Highway 22 that runs through Kalka town. The temple is very popular with hundreds of devotees pay their respects annually during the Navratri. It is believed that this temple was built in the age of Mahabhrata by Pandvas, during "Agyat Vas" when they stayed here for some time.
Shri Balaji Temple
In 1988 an ancient temple of Balaji (childhood incarnition of Hindu god Hanuman) was excavated on one of the hills overlooking the town. This temple has also become popular destination among devotees, including localites. Every year thousands of devotees come to pay there respects to the Hindu God Hanuman. This shrine is getting more and more popular day by day
The Yadavindra Gardens at Pinjore, believed to be built by Mughals, is another popular destination among people visiting the area. Every year a Mango Mela is organised here in which 500 varieties of mangoes are displayed for the visitors.There are many buildings which was made by Mughals and was of greenery only.
- Imperial gazetteer of India: provincial series, Volume 21. Supdt. of Govt. of India. 1906. p. 335.
- "Climate:Kalka". Retrieved 2014-02-10.