Firms interested in Sabarimala pilgrims insurance scheme: Travancore Devasom Board

Until the previous pilgrimage season, the insurance coverage for pilgrims was provided in partnership with the United India Insurance company.
Sabarimala temple
Sabarimala templePhoto | Express

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Travancore Devasom Board (TDB) has received a positive response from insurance companies for its plan to launch insurance coverage for pilgrims visiting the hill shrine in Sabarimala.

Sabarimala temple
TDB plans insurance scheme for Sabarimala pilgrims

Recent meetings with a couple of insurance companies have provided valuable insight into the market, according to TDB president P S Prasanth. “The insurance provider will be selected through a competitive and fair process, with the next step being to invite Expressions of Interest (EOI) from companies. The firm offering maximum benefits for a minimum premium will be chosen,” said Prasanth. He highlighted that the majority of deaths reported at the hill shrine and its premises were due to non-accident reasons such as heart failure and respiratory problems.

“Approximately 55 lives were lost during the previous pilgrimage season alone. For the past few years, the TDB has provided accident death insurance coverage for pilgrims. However, every year, the majority of the fatalities are due to non-accident reasons, and hence, the families of the victims cannot be compensated,” said Prasanth.

Until the previous pilgrimage season, the insurance coverage for pilgrims was provided in partnership with the United India Insurance company.

The board paid the annual premium for a scheme that provided limited benefits. It offered Rs 5 lakh compensation for accidental deaths on Sabarimala and its premises.

Regarding other deaths, Rs 30,000 was allocated for ambulance costs within the state, and Rs 50,000 for those outside the state.

Now, the board aims to introduce a new insurance scheme where pilgrims can opt for coverage by paying a one-time premium of up to Rs 10 while booking darshan through the Virtual Q system. The board aims to facilitate an insurance cover of about Rs 5 lakh under this new scheme, providing enhanced benefits for the pilgrims.

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