- IRCTC launched the first tour of the Shri Ramayana Yatra Express Train from Delhi on 7th November. Upcoming trains to be departing from Madurai on 16th November and Sri Ganganagar on 25th November.
- Places central to the life of Lord Rama will be covered – Ayodhya, Varanasi, Chitrakoot, Prayag etc.
- Fares for the train stand at Rs. 82,950 per person for 2nd AC and Rs. 1,02, 095 for 1st AC.
- Budget-segment trains starting from Madurai and Sri Ganganagar are scheduled to depart on 16th and 25th November respectively.
The Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has set in motion a series of Shri Ramayana Yatra Train Tours targeted at uplifting pilgrim tourism in the country and implementing the Centre’s ‘Dekho Apna Desh’ initiative. This move signifies the progressive recommencement of domestic tourism via trains in light of the improved covid-19 situation.
The first train started its 17 days tour from Delhi Safdarjung station on Sunday, 7th November and would encompass cities like Varanasi, Ayodhya and all other significant locations pivotal to the life of Lord Rama and the Sanskrit Saga of Ramayana. Communication released by the IRCTC reveals that there are a variety of packages accessible for the Shri Ramayana Yatra pilgrimage.
The upcoming tour, as declared by the IRCTC will commence on November 16 from Madurai boasting a 13 nights/14 days package. A third will depart on November 25th from Sri Ganganagar involving a 16 nights/ 17 days package.
The first stoppage of this train will be Ayodhya, where pilgrims will visit the Shri Rama Janmbhumi temple and Hanuman temple in addition to Bharat Mandir at Nandigram. The subsequent destination will be Sitamarhi in Bihar where tourists will visit Sita Mata’s birthplace and Ram-Janki temple in Janakpur to be travelled by road.
Consecutive to his, the train will proceed towards Varanasi and travellers would stop by temples at Varanasi, Prayag, Shringverpur and Chitrakoot. Night stay will be arranged at Varanasi, Prayag and Chitrakoot. Trayambakeshwar temple and Panchvati in Nasik will also be covered by this pilgrim tourist train. Following this, tourists would journey to Hampi, the ancient Krishkindha city.
The train will culminate at Rameshwaram post which it will return to Delhi on the 17th Day of its journey. An approximate 7500km stretch will be travelled throughout the tour.
Fares for the train amount to Rs. 82,950 per person for 2nd AC and Rs. 1,02, 095 per head for 1st AC. The price charged will cover the train journey, AC hotel accommodation, meals (only Veg), sight-seeing expenses, travel insurance and services for the IRCTC Tour Managers, etc.
The first tour of the Yatra commenced with a 100% occupancy on 7th November as Tweeted by Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw. IRCTC has mandated vaccination certificate or RT-PCR negative report that is taken less than 48 hours prior to the travel date.
Bookings for the Shri Ramayana Yatra Madurai Express has already started and the same can be done on the official website of IRCTC. This budget-segment train includes sleeper class coaches and would cater to the pilgrim requirements of south India. Priced at Rs. 14, 490 per person, this train would start on 16th November and retreat on 29th November.
A similar budget-segment train to fulfil the requirements of the North Indian segment would start from Sri Ganganagar on 25th November and would cover the aforementioned destinations as a part of its journey.