Berhampur: Nearly 900 senior citizens today boarded a special pilgrim train from Berhampur to Velankanni and Thanjavur in Tamil Nadu under Baristha Nagarika Tirtha Yatra Yojana as part of the Baristha Nagarika Tirtha Yatra Yojana, a pilgrimage programme for senior citizens.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today flagged off the train through video conferencing at the Secretariat here in the presence of Tourism and Culture Minister Ashok Chandra Panda.
The Chief Minister wished the passengers a happy and safe journey.
The State Tourism Department introduced the initiative for the poor and deprived senior citizens of the State for realisation of their lifelong dream of having one Tirtha Darshan (Pilgrimage) and fulfills their spiritual aspirations, with the support of the State in 2016.
This scheme offers pilgrimage facilities to people of all regions/faith, said the State Tourism Department release. The scheme helps senior citizens over 60-75 years of age to undertake pilgrimage at Government assistance.
Around 10,000 senior citizens have so far travelled in 10 special trains from Berhampur, Bhubaneswar, Sambalpur, Balasore and Titlagarh in Odisha to Rameswaram, Madurai, Prayagraj, Varanasi, Rishikesh, Haridwarm Ajmer, Pushkar, Tirupati, Vellore, Shirdi, Nasik, Trimbakeshwar, Agra, Mathura and Fatehpur Sikri.