About Ganga Vilas:
MV Ganga Vilas is the longest motor vessel (MV) river cruise in the world. On January 13, 2023, it was officially launched by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi via video conference. Yogi Adityanath, the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Himanta Biswa Sarma, the Chief Minister of Assam, and Sarbananda Sonowal, the Union Minister of Port Shipping and Waterways, were also in attendance. This is India's first cruise ship.
Routes Covered By Ganga Vilas:
The MV Ganga Vilas will cruise 3,200 kilometers in 51 days from Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh to Dibrugarh in Assam via Bangladesh, travelling through 27 river systems. The three decks and 18 suites of the MV Ganga Vilas can accommodate 36 tourists. 32 vacationers from Switzerland have signed up for the entire trip on the ship's inaugural voyage.
The MV Ganga Vilas cruise route visits important towns like Patna in Bihar, Sahibganj in Jharkhand, Kolkata in West Bengal, Dhaka in Bangladesh, and Guwahati in Assam as well as World Heritage Sites, National Parks, and River Ghats. This 51-day plan includes visits to more than fifty places.
The three decks of the motor vessel (MV) style cruise Ganga Vilas measure 62 meters in width and 12 meters in length.
The MV Ganga Vilas, the first cruise ship built in India, set out from Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh and travelled via Bangladesh to Dibrugarh in Assam. Tickets for a 51-day trip from Varanasi to Dibrugarh would cost Rs 12.59 lakh per person, according to the Antara Cruises website, the firm that runs the Ganga Vilas boat.
Impact on The Environment:
Environmentalists and conservationists worry that the Ganga Vilas Cruise may harm the Ganges river dolphin's (Platanista gangetica) habitat.
According to sources, the MV Ganga Vilas was unable to dock due to the shallow water near Doriganj in the Chhapra district. In spite of allegations that the opulent ship was stranded in Bihar's Chhapra on Monday, the Ganga cruise ship sailed in accordance with its schedule, according to a government statement on Monday. According to the schedule, the ship was anchored in Ghazipur on January 13, Buxar on January 14, and Mauzampur (Arrah) on January 15, according to a statement from the government.
The cruise ship arrived in Patna on January 16 at 4.45 p.m. after making a stop in Doriganj, according to the statement. According to the statement, the waterway levels were meticulously maintained and watched for the necessary draught of navigational facilities throughout the entire route. The tourists also stopped at places along the way, as scheduled. The official statement added that the draught of the waterway at Doriganj is 3.5m, significantly over the vessel draught minimum of 1.4m, and that tourists were transferred from the ship to the bank using the tug boat to assure their safety and privacy.
The government stated, "There is absolutely no truth in the rumors that the ship is anchored at Chhapra, adding that the cruise line determines the anchoring location and method of transportation for visitors to the bank based on the safety and privacy of its guests. According to report from Monday, the Ganga Vilas cruise, which Prime Minister Narendra Modi had flagged off from Varanasi on January became stuck near Bihar's Chhapra because of too shallow water in the Ganga. Due to water shortage in the Ganges at the Doriganj section of the district, the cruise that was supposed to land at the shore for the tourists to visit Chirand, an archaeological site, became trapped. Officials stated that it was challenging to get the cruise to the shore because of the shallow water.
"An SDRF team is stationed at the ghat to enable prompt response to any unfavorable circumstances. There is a difficulty docking the cruise because there is little water. Therefore, efforts are being undertaken to convey tourists using small boats, according to a report from ANI, which quoted Satendra Singh, the CO of Chhapra. Raj Singh, the founder and CEO of Antara Cruises, which is running the MV Ganga Vilas, however, informed The Indian Express on Monday night that the information was false. He stated that "the ship is currently anchored in Patna in accordance with schedule" and that "large ships can't go to the shore when there is less water, therefore you have to utilize small ships or tenders to disembark."
Vegetarian meals are supplied during the tour, which costs Rs 50,000 per person per day. Singh claims that any special dietary requirements are met. 32 visitors from Switzerland have signed up for the entire duration of the inaugural trip. The opulent triple-deck cruise, which can accommodate 36 passengers in 18 suites, is planned to sail down what is allegedly the longest waterway in the entire planet. The 51-day cruise will visit 50 tourist spots, including world heritage sites, national parks, river gorges, and significant cities, while travelling 3,200 kilometers across 27 river systems. Following Patna, the itinerary calls for stops in Shahibganj, Jharkhand, Kolkata, West Bengal, Dhaka, Guwahati, Assam, and Dibrugarh on March 1.