To tap the potential of the tourism sector, Indian Railways is planning to spread Rail based tourism among masses through leasing coaching stock to interested parties to run them as theme-based cultural, religious and other Tourist Circuit trains.
This initiative intends to leverage the core strengths of the tourism sector professionals in tourism activities like marketing, hospitality, integration of services, reach with the customer base, expertise in development /identification of tourist circuits, etc.
Under the proposed model, leasing of coaches as per the desired configuration of interested parties is done. Also, bare shells may be taken on lease, or outright purchase of coaches can be made.
Leasing is to be done for a minimum of five years and extendable till the life of coaches.
Other features of this model include priority in punctuality, timely approvals for coach refurbishment and itineraries, no haulage for maintenance runs and permitting third party advertising inside the train, including branding of the train.
The Ministry of Railways has constituted an Executive Director level committee to formulate the policy and terms and conditions.