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news details
PM Modi to launch world’s longest river cruise in Varanasi
1/9/2023 12:18:17 AM

Agencies

New Delhi, Jan 8: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch the world’s longest river cruise on January 13 in Varanasi, which the Union Minister of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, Sarbananda Sonowal said will herald a new age of river cruise tourism for India.
The luxury cruise will cover a distance of more than 3,200 km across 27 river systems in five states in India and Bangladesh. The huge untapped potential of river cruises is set to get unlocked with the launch of this service, added Mr Sonowal.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr Sonowal said, “Under the dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, we are exploring the immense wealth that our rich river system has to offer”.
Mr Sonowal said, “This avenue of sustainable development via inland waterways has received a tremendous boost as efforts to augment cargo traffic as well as passenger tourism have borne fruit with encouraging results. The MV Ganga Vilas cruise is a step towards unlocking the huge potential river tourism the country has to offer”. “Our rich heritage will get further transcended on the global stage as tourists will be able to experience the spiritual, the educational, the well-being, the cultural as well as the richness of the biodiversity of India,” he added.
“From Kashi to Sarnath, from Majuli to Mayong, from Sunderbans to Kaziranga, this cruise packs an experience of a lifetime. I believe that this wonderful initiative, under the guidance of Prime Minister Modi, is the beginning of a new era in river cruise tourism in India and strengthening our government’s commitment to enabling Act East, both through policy and practice,” minister said
The MV Ganga Vilas cruise is curated to bring out the best of the country to be showcased to the world.
The 51 days cruise is planned with visits to 50 tourist spots including World Heritage Sites, national parks, river ghats, and major cities like Patna in Bihar, Sahibganj in Jharkhand, Kolkata in West Bengal, Dhaka in Bangladesh, and Guwahati in Assam.
The MV Ganga Vilas vessel is 62 metres in length and 12 meters in width and comfortably sails with a draft of 1.4 meters.
It has three decks, and 18 suites on board with a capacity of 36 tourists, with all the amenities to provide a memorable and luxurious experience for the tourists.
The ship follows sustainable principles at its core as it is equipped with pollution-free mechanisms and noise control technologies.
The maiden voyage of MV Ganga Vilas will witness 32 tourists from Switzerland relishing the Varanasi to Dibrugarh journey.
The expected date of arrival of MV Ganga Vilas in Dibrugarh is on March 1, 2023.
The itinerary of MV Ganga Vilas has been curated to showcase the rich heritage of India with stopovers in spots of historical, cultural and religious importance.
From the famous “Ganga Arti” in Varanasi, it will stop at Sarnath, a place of great reverence for Buddhism. It will also cover Mayong, known for its Tantric craft, and Majuli, the largest river island and hub of Vaishnavite culture in Assam.
The travellers will also visit the Bihar School of Yoga and Vikramshila University, allowing them to soak in the rich Indian heritage in spirituality and knowledge.
The cruise will also traverse through the biodiversity-rich World Heritage Sites of Sunderbans in the Bay of Bengal delta, famous for Royal Bengal Tigers, as well as Kaziranga National Park, famous for one horn rhino.
Highlighting the need to develop river cruise tourism in the country, Union Minister Sonowal said that the development of this sector would generate employment opportunities in the hinterland.
The government is making capital expenditures to build capacity for the success of river cruise tourism in the country.
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