We travelled to Kolkata on 10 October , looking forward to Pandaw’s inaugural 14 day cruise up the Ganges to Varanasi.
Late in the afternoon of 11 October ( the day before departure ) we were told that the cruise was not going to take place . We later found out that the stated reason , namely a closed lock at Farraka , had been known to Pandaw since 4 October ( at the latest ) . Pandaw deliberately concealed this information from their passengers , no doubt to ensure that they travelled to India unaware that the cruise they had paid for was about to be cancelled.
On assembling for embarkation on 12 October we were told that our options were (1) a refund for the cost of the cruise , but not of the costs of travelling to India (2) a circular cruise of the Lower Ganges and a refund of the cost of the second week (3) a circular cruise of the Lower Ganges followed by a land based second week , touring Bihar by coach . Though very disappointed with what we were offered we took option (2) , confident that Pandaw would provide us with proper compensation for having failed to provide us with what we had paid for .