Bhubaneswar: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Thursday flagged off the pilgrimage train for senior citizens.
Patnaik flagged off the special train ( fifth Baristha Nagarika Tirtha Yatra train), which left Berhampur station, through video conferencing at state Secretariat here.
As many as 997 senior citizens from 10 Southern districts including Kandhamal, Boudh, Nabarangpur, Rayagada, Koraput, Malkangiri and Ganjam boarded the train. The senior citizens will visit Tirupati (Andhra Pradesh) and Vellore (Tamil Nadu). They will return on January 9.
Tourism Minister Ashok Panda, Food and Civil Supplies Minister Surya Narayan Patro, Skill Development & Technical Education Minister Usha Devi and local MLAs were present at the Berhampur railway station and flagged off the train.
Under the Baristha Nagarika Tirtha Yatra Yojana, pilgrims within the age group of 60-75 years can get the benefit of visiting various pilgrimage sites in India.
While the pilgrims from below poverty line (BPL) categories can avail 100 per cent concessions under the scheme, non-BPL pilgrims (except income tax payee) in the age group of 60-70 years can avail 50 per cent concessions and those above 70 and up to 75 years can get 70 per cent concessions, said official sources.