From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : Bharat Gaurav Scheme
Mains level : Pilgrim tourism
The ‘Bharat Gaurav’ train service from Coimbatore to Shirdi, a first of its kind in the country, was inaugurated at the Coimbatore North Railway Station.
What are Bharat Gaurav trains?
- Bharat Gaurav express trains are operated by private players, who have the right to use the rail infrastructure provided by the Indian Railways.
About Bharat Gaurav Scheme
- Under this Scheme, theme-based tourist circuit trains, on the lines of the Ramayana Express, can be run either by private or State-owned operators.
- Till now, the Railways had passenger segments and goods segments.
- Now, it will have a third segment for tourism under the Bharat Gaurav.
- The scheme has been developed after extensive stakeholder discussions and a lot of State Governments, including Odisha, Rajasthan, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, have shown interest.
- Service providers, who can be an individual, company, society, trust, joint venture or consortium will be free to decide themes/circuits.
- They will offer an all-inclusive package to tourists including rail travel, hotel accommodation and sightseeing arrangement, visit to historical/heritage sites, tour guides etc.
- They have full flexibility to decide the package cost.
- The service providers will also be able to design/furnish the interior of the coaches based on the theme and put branding or advertising inside and outside of the train.