Delhi to offer free pilgrimage trips for senior citizens
A total of 77,000 pilgrims will be able to avail the scheme every year
NEW DELHI: The senior citizens of Delhi will now get free pilgrimage trips offered by the Delhi Government, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia announced on Tuesday.
The name of the scheme is Mukhyamantri Tirth Yatra Yojana and a total of 77,000 pilgrims will be able to avail this facility every year.
"The cabinet approved the Revenue Department proposal to begin the scheme titled Mukhyamantri Tirth Yatra Yojana to enable 1,100 senior citizens from each Assembly Constituency per year to undertake the free pilgrimage, the expenses for which will be borne by the government," said Sisodia.
The five destinations from which citizens can choose include Mathura-vrindavan, Haridwar-rishikesh, Pushkar-ajmer, Amritsar-anandpur Sahib, and the Vaishno Devi Temple. The state government will fund the travel, stay, and food expenses of eligible citizens.
Any resident of Delhi above 60 years of age will be eligible for the scheme and those selected, will be allowed to be accompanied by an attendant above 18 years of age, whose expenditure will also be borne by the government.
The government also asserted that the applicant should not have an income of above Rs 3 lakh per annum and the applicant should not be an employee of central/state/local government or autonomous bodies. The applicant will have to give a self-certificate that all information being given by them is correct and they have not availed the scheme in the past and those selected for pilgrimage will be covered with an insurance of Rs two lakh each.
Manish Sisodia said, "Travel will be in A/C buses through coach tours of DTTDC, boarding lodging and food along with pilgrimage will be paid for by the government."
The officials said all application forms will be available online and shall be filed online either through office of Divisional Commissioner or office of respective MLA or office of Tirth Yatra Committee. "The selection of pilgrims will be done through draw of lots and respective area MLA will have to certify the residents as belonging to Delhi. All other modalities will be specified in the final notification," said an official. The government has not yet decided the launch of the scheme but within a month it is likely to be launched.