With the Pran Pratishtha event at the Ram Mandir just a few days away, the Uttar Pradesh government has decided to offer helicopter services to Ayodhya from Lucknow, Gorakhpur, Prayagraj, Varanasi, Agra, and Mathura.
Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath will inaugurate the helicopter service from Lucknow on Friday (January 19). The government has also set the fares for helicopter services and plans are underway to extend this to other districts in the state in the near future.
In addition to this, the state government is also introducing an aerial darshan of Ayodhya city and the Ram Temple for devotees. The tourism department has been assigned responsibility for this initiative. Devotees interested in aerial darshan will need to make advance bookings to avail of the facility.
Uttar Pradesh’s Principal Secretary of Tourism, Mukesh Meshram, said that the Chief Minister had given instructions to provide helicopter facilities to Ram devotees. Under this, helicopter service is being initiated from six districts of the state. This facility will be made available to devotees and tourists on an operator model.
Furthermore, Ram devotees will have the opportunity of an aerial darshan of the Ram temple. The helicopter rides will take off from the helipad near the Tourism Guest House along the banks of the Saryu river. Devotees will enjoy an aerial tour covering renowned tourist destinations, including Ram Mandir, Hanumangarhi, and Saryu Ghat. The duration of this air journey is set at a maximum of 15 minutes, with a fixed fare of Rs 3,539 per devotee.
Each helicopter ride can accommodate up to five devotees, with a weight limit of 400 kg. Devotees are allowed to carry a maximum of 5 kg of luggage. Additionally, helicopter services will be available for the 126 km distance from Gorakhpur to Ayodhya Dham, completing the journey in 40 minutes. The fare for this service is fixed at Rs 11,327 per devotee.
Director of the Tourism Department, Prakhar Mishra, said that in the coming time, the service will be expanded as per demand.
Mishra shared that devotees can access helicopter services from Namo Ghat in Varanasi, covering a distance of 160 km in just 55 minutes, with a fixed fare of Rs 14,159 per devotee. Additionally, services are available from Ramabai in Lucknow, covering 132 km in 45 minutes at the same fare.
Helicopter services are also accessible from the helipad near the Tourism Guest House in Prayagraj, covering 157 km in 50 minutes with a fare of Rs 14,159 per devotee. Furthermore, devotees can opt for helicopter services from the helipad near Govardhan Parikrama in Barsana, Mathura, and the helipad near Agra Expressway in Agra. These longer routes, spanning 456 km and 440 km respectively, take 135 minutes to complete, with a fixed fare of Rs 35,399 per devotee.
The fixed fares for helicopter services are one-way, and devotees travelling from Ayodhya Dham will need to pay the revised fare. The frequency of helicopter flights to Ayodhya Dham will be adjusted based on the number of devotees, ensuring daily service from each destination.