Recently, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal in a written reply to a question in Lok Sabha stated that works of five new railway lines have been included in the Budget, which are currently in different stages of execution to connect the Buddhist Pilgrimage Centres.
Indian Railways is all set to connect various Buddhist Pilgrimage Centres across the country! Soon, you will able to explore many iconic destinations, dedicated to Gautama Buddha with Indian Railways trains. Recently, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal in a written reply to a question in Lok Sabha stated that works of five new railway lines have been included in the Budget, which are currently in different stages of execution to connect the Buddhist Pilgrimage Centres. The upcoming rail lines for Buddhist Pilgrimage Centres are Gaya – Bodhgaya – Chatra, Gaya – Natesar (Nalanda); Rajgir – Hisua – Tilaiya, Natesar – Islampur; Kapilvastu – Basti; Bahraich – Shravasti – Balrampur/Tulsipur and Padrauna – Kushinagar via Gorakhpur.
At present, Indian Railways runs an IRCTC Buddhist Tourist Train which covers several destinations including Gaya, Rajgir, Nalanda, Varanasi, Sarnath, Kushinagar, Lumbini, Sravasti and Agra. The Buddhist Tourist Train departs from Delhi’s Safdarjung railway station. The departure dates for 2020 are 11, 25 January; 8, 22 February; 14, 28 March; 26 September; 10, 24 October; 7, 21 November; 5, 19 December. The tour package includes AC- First Class, AC- 2 Tier and AC- First Coupe travel.
The all-inclusive tour package includes exclusive air-conditioned train journey, road transport by air-conditioned coaches, accommodation, meals, sightseeing, English and Hindi speaking tour escort, travel insurance, and entrance fees of monuments or sightseeing trips. The tour package, however, does not include India and Nepal visa fees, personal nature items like laundry, medicine, alcoholic drinks, etc., fees for still/flash video camera at the monuments and other places, hotel stay in Delhi before and after the trip, air ticket, visa charges, etc., road transfers to and from Delhi’s Safdarjung railway station, any other services that are not mentioned in the package price.
If the ticket is cancelled in 45 days and above (excluding the departure date) then 10% of the total cost is deducted, if cancelled within a period of 44 to 15 days then 25% is deducted, if cancelled within a period of 14 to 7 days then 50% is deducted, if cancelled within the period of 7 days or before the scheduled date of departure then there is no refund.