The IR (Indian railways) ministry has drafted new policies in the year 2017 that aims at promoting tourism. It has further put the new draft on public domain for feedback’s till 24th of April. The draft introduced by the ministry of Indian railways reads, “Tourism will be one of the frontline activities with the railways and the scope will be increased by focusing on domestic and international tourists and by making value-addition to tourism products, especially designed for this segment.”
The draft further seeks to increase private partnership in running tourist trains. The main provisions of the draft includes dedicated train services for customers of all income levels catering to domestic as well as international tourists, rope in several service providers including Indian railway catering and tourism corporation, manage other services like hotel accommodation and sightseeing for the tourists and propose to reserve special coaches for tourists on trains running through different tourist spots across the country. The Indian railways will also take special care to increase the frequency of hill tourist trains specially during the peak season and has proposed reviving steam trains to be operated in such areas. There will be also special trains under the section of “Bharat Darshan trains” and “religious tourism”, the former will be operated by IR on its own cost and the latter will run on the request of state government at their cost. The draft also allows one year advance bookings of seats for foreign tourists.
The major aim of the new railway draft is to operate more trains connecting tourist destinations and also by providing special train services ranging from luxury to budget sections. It will offer luxury, semi-luxury tourist trains, Buddhist special trains, bharat darshan trains, aastha circuit trains and the cherry on the cake is that additionally it will also offer state tirth trains, flexi-package trains, ordinary trains, hill tourist trains, steam tourist trains, value-added tour package and a foreign tourist quota.
Undoubtedly the new draft will surely enhance the tourism in india and will make railways a better option to travel with.