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Pravasi Teerth Darshan Yojana

Updated on :  

08 min read.

The Pravasi Teerth Darshan Yojana was introduced in FY 2018-19 for the elderly generation of Person of Indian Origins (PIOs) aged between 45 to 65 years from the Girmitiya countries. The Girmitiya countries are Guyana, Fiji, South Africa, Mauritius, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago reunion island. This scheme provides an opportunity for the PIOs to reconnect with their Indian roots through a government-sponsored pilgrimage tour across India.

The purpose of the Pravasi Teerth Darshan Yojana is to bring Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) to India and make them familiar with the history and culture of this land. This scheme is for individuals born in India but who live abroad and are not familiar with the religion and culture of their country due to many reasons. Through this scheme, Indian expatriate citizens can visit religious places in India.

The Pravasi Teerth Darshan Yojana is targeted primarily at PIOs in Girmitiya countries who belong to lower-income groups and cannot afford to visit India. It is a 17 days programme conducted in coordination with Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation Limited (IRCTC). So far, four editions of the Pravasi Teerth Darshan Yojana have been undertaken with the participation of 160 PIOs, with 40 people in each group. 

Features of Pravasi Teerth Darshan Yojana

  • Under the Pravasi Teerth Darshan Yojana, a group of Indian diaspora will be taken on a government-sponsored tour of India’s religious places twice a year.
  • Selected NRIs and PIOs will be taken to religious places of all the major religions in India.
  • The government will bear the expenses, including the airfare from their country of residence.
  • The PIOs aged between 45 to 65 can apply to participate in the government-sponsored tour under the scheme.
  • Through the scheme, NRIs will get an opportunity to learn about the country’s culture.
  • It will boost tourism in India, which can make a significant contribution to India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Girmitiya Countries

Girmitiyas are the descendants of Indian labourers brought to Mauritius, Fiji, East Africa, South Africa, the Caribbean, the Malay Peninsula, and South America (Trinidad and Tobago, Suriname and Guyana) to work in sugarcane plantations for the prosperity of the European settlers.

The term ‘Girmitiya’ was coined by Mahatma Gandhi, the father of the nation, who referred to himself as the first Girmitiya. The countries where these Indian labourers settled are known as the Girmitiya countries.

Eligibility Criteria of Pravasi Teerth Darshan Yojana

  • Only NRIs and PIOs can apply for this scheme.
  • People from Girmitiya countries would be given priority amongst the people to be selected.
  • The age limit to apply should be 45 to 65 years.
  • The age certificate and residential certificate document showing that the applicant is an NRI are required.

Application for Pravasi Teerth Darshan Yojana

  • Go to the official website of the Know India Programme.
  • Under the ‘Login’ tab, click on the ‘For Registration – Click Here’ button. 
  • Enter the details such as country residence, name, date of birth, gender, mobile number, email ID, and password and click on the ‘Submit’ button to complete the registration.
  • After the registration is complete, log in to the website by entering the username and password.
  • Check whether the registration is open for Pravasi Teerth Darshan Yojana.
  • When the registration is open, apply for participation in the government-sponsored tour conducted under this scheme.
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