The Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), in collaboration with the School Education Department and the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation Limited (IRCTC), has organised a special “educational tour” for 450 children from various government schools in Karaikal and Puducherry. The train to Mysore and Bangalore will be flagged-off from Puducherry railway station by Chief Minister N. Rangasamy on Wednesday.

Special Project Director of SSA Parthasarathy said a majority of the students - 300 from Puducherry and 150 from Karaikal - were from underprivileged sections of society, including those belonging to the minority communities. Most of them come from economically weak families that cannot afford to take their children on a tour outside the Union Territory.

“The idea was to give them some exposure and make them realise that there was a world out there to explore,” he said.

The students were selected based on their background and their performance in academics. All expenses, including lodging and food, would be borne by the SSA.

Mr. Parthasarathy said such a tour was being organised for the first time in Puducherry.

The students would be accompanied by 45 teachers and officials of the School Education Department.