Guwahati, Nov 11: The Union Minister Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways and Ayush, Sarbananda Sonowal today announced that country’s first ever river ship - Ganga Vilas - will bring about the country’s longest river cruise between historic cities of Varanasi in UP and Dibrugarh in Assam. The cruise is likely to be in operation from January next year.
The longest river cruise will be traverse 27 river systems covering a distance of more than 3200 kilometres, include visits to as many as 50 tourist sites including World Heritage Sites. The journey will be completed in 50 days.
The Ganga Vilas cruise will start from Varanasi on river Ganga (National Waterway 1) in UP from January, 2022; move through Indo-Bangladesh Protocol Route (IBRP) and reach Bogibeel on the River Brahmaputra (NW2) in Dibrugarh, Assam by March, 2022.
In line with ‘PM Gati Shakti’ scheme, the Union Government Sonowal today launched a number of schemes to reinvigorate the inland waterways system in the country with Varanasi as the hub. The announcements were made during the ongoing PM Gati Shakti Multimodal Waterways Summit, 2022.
During the event held at Varanasi, a total of seven community jetties were inaugurated with 3 jetties in Varanasi, 2 jetties in Ballia, and one each at Chandauli & Ghazipur. Foundation stones for another 8 jetties were also laid by Sonowal and UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath which will come up in Ghazipur, Ballia and Varanasi.
Speaking on the occasion, the Union Minister of Sarbananda Sonowal, said, “We are on a mission mode to develop the rich heritage of inland waterways to develop an alternative mode to ferry cargo and people with the help of a modern, efficient, cost effective and sustainable transportation system.”