Luxury train to link five Takhts
Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal on Tuesday approved Panj Takhts Yatra Express as the name of the luxury train that will connect all five Takhts - Akal Takht in Amritsar, Damdama Sahib in Talwandi Sabo, Keshgarh Sahib in Anandpur Sahib, Patna Sahib in Bihar and Takht Sri Hazoor Sahib in Nanded (Maharashtra).chandigarh Updated: Apr 04, 2012 11:30 IST
Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal on Tuesday approved Panj Takhts Yatra Express as the name of the luxury train that will connect all five Takhts - Akal Takht in Amritsar, Damdama Sahib in Talwandi Sabo, Keshgarh Sahib in Anandpur Sahib, Patna Sahib in Bihar and Takht Sri Hazoor Sahib in Nanded (Maharashtra).
Principal secretary, tourism, Geetika Kalha said a special agreement had been signed between the Indian Railways Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) and the Punjab Heritage and Tourism Promotion Board (PHTPB) to run the train, which would be flagged off by Badal on December 26.
The train would cover the Takhts from Amritsar to Nanded via Delhi, Agra and Gwalior in nine days. Kalha sought the chief minister's intervention for the grant of subsidised tariff rates by the Railways for the Sikh pilgrimage circuit.
Badal asked the chief secretary to prepare a comprehensive case in this regard and said he would soon call on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and union railway minister Mukul Roy to resolve the issue on priority.
He also agreed to the proposal for the waiver of the motor vehicle tax and the permit fee for running a super luxury and ordinary AC buses to cover important historical gurdwaras and tourist sites in Punjab as a package tour of five nights and six days. He also directed the secretary, transport, to immediately issue orders in this regard.
Badal also took up the issue of early completion of the Anandpur Sahib-Naina Devi ropeway project to enable lakhs of pilgrims to offer prayers at these holy shrines. He talked to Himachal Pradesh chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal on the phone to seek his intervention for expeditious completion of the project.
On the occasion, a presentation was made by Kalha to inform the chief minister about the ongoing tourism and heritage projects, including Panj Sarovar Walk in Amritsar, Eco Cab, Sultanpur Lodhi and Patiala heritage trails, conservation of Gobindgarh fort, restoration of Town Hall for development of the city museum, Rambagh Garden and Attari Tourist Reception Centre; besides a cultural heritage management and tourism development plan for the Mughal imperial highway and the GT road in Punjab.