Indian Railways is soaring heights with new projects attracting lots of tourists and passengers. Like earlier the vista dome coaches and third AC coaches have been a luxurious treat to the passengers. Exploring new routes and express trains covering tourist spots have been a prime fantasy. Today a new proposition was unveiled by the PM on including a sikh tourist train covering main gurudwaras in the country which will prove to be a major tourist attraction.
Exclusive Gurudwara Circuit On Tracks
Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw is all set to launch an exclusive “Gurudwara Circuit” that will take passengers on a pilgrimage across the country. The 11-day journey that begins and ends in Amritsar will cover at least four prominent Gurudwaras including Harminder Sahib in Amritsar, Patna Sahib in Bihar’s capital city Patna, Hazoor Nanded Sahib in Nanded, Maharashtra & Damdama Sahib in Bhatinda. This train will have several stoppages including Ambala, Saharanpur, Lucknow, Manmad, Surat, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Bathinda and Amritsar.
The special train will comprise 16 coaches including sleeper class and air-conditioned class. The cost of travel for a passenger in an AC class will range between Rs 900-1000 per passenger per day. This circuit train will be run on a leasing model. The lease period will have to be a minimum of five years and can extend to the maximum coder life.
Private Or Government?
The officials associated with the project said the lease cost per year will be 7% of the depreciated value of the coach. While the operator will be responsible for the internal maintenance of the train, the external maintenance and repair work will be taken up with Indian Railways. The train coaches will be state of the art including having provisions for displaying the photographs of all the Sikh gurus and also playing of Gurbani during the travel.
There will be a pantry car on the train for the passengers to book their meals on the route. It is expected that only vegetarian food will be available during the travel. A leasing policy is expected to be announced sometime soon and as per sources in the railway ministry.