New Delhi: The first ever bus service between India and Nepal successfully completed its maiden journey from Kathmandu to New Delhi.
This bus service was flagged off by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Nepal on Tuesday, where he is attending the 18th South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Summit.
Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari had inaugurated the Kathmandu-bound bus service from New Delhi on Tuesday.
Prime Minister Modi had said this step would strengthen bilateral ties between both the neighbours.
This bus service is expected to give a boost to trade and tourism between the two countries.
A passenger, Jagan Thakal, said they were provided complete security throughout the journey.
"All through our journey in Nepal, the police escorted us to the border. After that SSB (Sashastra Seema Bal (Armed Border Force) personnel escorted us and then the police of each district accompanied us and made sure that we reach safely. This journey of 30 hours felt like a journey of three hours, I enjoyed a lot," said Thakal.
This bus service is a direct service between the two national capitals and a single bus ticket costs Rs 2,300. Passengers are required to present an identification proof to purchase the same.
Another passenger, Maya Tamang, said all necessary arrangements were made to keep the passengers at ease.
"I am feeling very good right now. Security personnel were with us throughout the journey and arrangements had also been made for refreshments within the bus itself. Hence, we could reach comfortably," said Tamang.
Passengers can book their tickets for the bus 60 days in advance and this service will soon be available online.
This is the second such bus service launched by India with one of its neighbouring countries. The first such service, called Sada-e-Sarhad, was launched by former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in February 1999. Vajpayee had himself travelled in the bus on its maiden journey from Amritsar to Lahore in Pakistan.