Jun 6, 2016

To tiger country, on a train of luxury stripes

The IRCTC service offers safaris to watch the big cats in their natural habitats

Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu flagged off Tiger Express, a semi-luxury tourist train to spread awareness of tiger conservation, from the Safdarjung station here on World Environment Day on Sunday.
This is the first semi-luxury train on a tourist circuit having a dining car. Tariffs start from Rs. 38,500, said a statement by the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation, which runs the service.

The five night, six day package offers accommodation in air-conditioned rooms of three-star or equivalent-ranked hotels for three nights, sightseeing, food, inter-city transfers and travel insurance, it said.

An IRCTC official said the train would first take passengers to Katni from where they would go to Bandhavgarh by road for a safari. Kanha is the next stop, where they would go on another safari. The tourists would then be taken to the Dhuadhar Falls in Bhedaghat, Jabalpur, before heading back to Delhi.

“The Tiger Express is one of the most innovative tourist products launched by the IRCTC. Its announcement was made by Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu in his budget speech,” said A.K. Manocha, Chairman and Managing Director, IRCTC.

“We have planned monthly trips of the fully air-conditioned train from October,” he added.

Union Minister Harsh Vardhan and BJP national spokesperson Meenakshi Lekhi attended the function.

“I congratulate the Railways for starting this train. The Railways is attempting to make people realise the importance of tigers. And I am happy about the fact that the launch of this train was announced in the budget and I am happy that the train has been started right on time,” Mr. Vardhan said.


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