July, 13, 2018
Indai will soon launch a train tiled ‘Sri Ramayana Express’ that would travel from Ayodhya to Colombo via Rameshwaram, a recent report in Indian Media outlines.
The first 800-seater train under the service would start its journey from November 14, from Delhi and take 16 days to cover the circuit, and those who want to cover the last leg of the religious journey would have to opt for a flight from Chennai to Colombo. The journey within India, which will cover all religious destinations from Ayodhya to Rameshwaram, would cost around Indian Rs 15,120 per person (Average Sri Lankan Rs. 36,000 or US $ 225). The amount would also cover major expenses of religious journey, including onboard train meals, night stays, changing and washroom facilities at dharamshalas.
The special train of India is targeted towards boosting religious tourism in South Asia, especially in India and Sri Lanka, giving the travelers an opportunity to travel across destinations of the legendary ‘Ramayana tales’. According to historians Ramayana is said to be the story that outlines the entire history of Hinduism and the story of the war between Indian King Rama and Sri Lankan Emperor Rawana, which turned out after Rawana kidnapped Rama’s wife, since Rama and his brother Lakshman cut the nose of widowed beautiful Rawana’s sister Meenakshi who was also called as Surpanakha.
Report quoted Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) who said that “IRCTC will cover all transfers and sightseeing and IRCTC tour managers will travel along with the passengers for necessary assistance”. The train, which will start from Safdarjung station of Delhi, will make its first stop in Ayodhya, which according to the epic is the birthplace of the Hindu god Ram, Hanuman Garhi, Ramkot and the Kanak Bhawan Temple. The train will then move along the circuit, making stops at Nandigram, Sitamarhi, Janakpur, Varanasi, Prayag, Shringaverpur, Chitrakoot, Nasik, Hampi and Rameshwaram or at the nearest railway stations. Railways will facilitate trips by road from the station to the pilgrimage site.
Those wanting to go to Sri Lanka will be transferred to Chennai by train and flown to Colombo. They will also travel to Ramboda, Nuwara Elliya and Chilaw.
“We see good revenue on this circuit. Right now date of first train has been announced and after seeing the response, we will decide whether to run the train once or twice in a year,” Rajni Hasija, Director (Tourism) of IRCTC had told reporters.
- Reporting by Devendra Francis