Source: Orissa Post
About a thousand senior citizens have been selected from all the ten districts under the northern revenue division for a seven-day pilgrimage to western India. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik will wish them bon voyage through a video conference from Bhubaneswar at 12.15 pm April 16. They will return April 22 after visiting Nasik, Shirdi and Trayambakeswar.
Sambalpur district tourist officer Rabindra Dalei disclosed that the state government had set Rs 2 crore for the programme at the rate of Rs 20,000 per pilgrim. A special train has been arranged for them from Sambalpur and all amenities have been provided during their pilgrimage.
District Special Land Acquisition Officer (DSLAO) Sitanshu Tripathy has been appointed as the nodal officer and 60 other officials have been given other responsibilities to make the journey successful. A team of senior officials, government doctors and a medical team will accompany the pilgrims to look after their security and medical needs.
Selected pilgrims will assemble at Sambalpur April 15. The administration has arranged two venues, Railways Kalyan Mandap and Patneswari Kalyan Mandap, for their stay. They will be taken to Sambalpur railway station in the morning of April 16 to board the train for their onward journey.
Senior citizens for the pilgrimage have been selected after an extensive exercise of screening. The maximum number of pilgrims are from Sundargarh district (167) and the minimum are from Deogarh (25). The numbers of pilgrims from the other districts are: Sambalpur 111, Kendujhar 145, Balangir 145, Bargarh 92, Angul 102, Dhenkanal 96, Sonepur 52 and Jharsuguda 47. PNN