Category Archives: MOT

KJ Alphons inaugurates first Swadesh Darshan project in Sikkim

K J Alphons, Union Minister for Tourism has inaugurated the project ‘Development of North East Circuit: Rangpo– Rorathang- Aritar- Phadamchen- Nathang-Sherathang- Tsongmo- Gangtok-Phodong- Mangan- Lachung-Yumthang- Lachen- Thangu-Gurudongmer- Mangan- Gangtok-Tuminlingee- Singtam’ implemented under Swadesh Darshan Scheme of Ministry of Tourism in the presence of Ugen T Gyatso, Minister of Tourism & Civil Aviation, Government of Sikkim at Zero Point, Gangtok. This project was sanctioned by Ministry of Tourism in June 2015 for Rs 98.05 crores. One of the many challenges region faces in development of tourism is the absence of quality infrastructure, services and awareness about the array of tourism products region has to offer. The Ministry is carrying out number of activities to handle the issues on above fronts. On one hand, the Ministry has given great impetus to the tourism infrastructure in the region under its flagship schemes of Swadesh Darshan and PRASHAD. For development of tourism infrastructure, the Ministry has sanctioned 16 projects for Rs 1349.04 crores covering all North Eastern States under its schemes of Swadesh Darshan and PRASHAD.  The Ministry is actively working with other Central Ministries like M/o Culture, M/o DONER, M/o Road Transport and Highways, M /o Civil Aviation, etc for development of tourism in the region. For promotion of North East region Ministry carries out special promotion in domestic and international markets highlighting regions diversity, tourism products and its rich culture. The Ministry of Tourism has also set up hotel managements and food craft institutes for creating skilled manpower in tourism and hospitality sector in the North Eastern Region.  

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Five day long ‘Bharat Parv’ at Red Fort promotes cultural diversity

The Ministry of Tourism in collaboration with other central ministries is organising the fourth edition of ‘Bharat Parv’ showcasing the spirit of Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat at Red Fort in Delhi from January 26-31, 2019. Inaugurated by Satyajeet Rajan, Director General, Ministry of Tourism, the five-day event is a part of Republic Day celebrations with an objective to generate a patriotic fervour, promote the rich cultural diversity of the country and ensure wider participation of the general public. Bharat Parv will be open for public from 12 noon to 10 PM every day. The entry will be free. However, identity proof is to be carried for entry to the event. The major highlights of this year are the replica of the Statue of Unity created by sculptor Ram Vanji Suttar and a Gandhi Gram in which 10 painting artists will create paintings on the theme of ‘Ideology of Mahatma Gandhi’. Organised by the Ministry of Tourism other highlights of this year are the display of Republic Day parade tableaux, performances by the Armed Forces Bands (Static as well as dynamic) and photo exhibition by the Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity (DAVP).

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MOT sanctions Spiritual Circuit in Kerala; over 130 religious sites covered

Union Minister of State (I/C) for Tourism, K J Alphons announced that the Ministry of Tourism sanctioned projects worth Rs 85.23 crore for the development of Spiritual Circuit III for Kerala under Swadesh Darshan Scheme. Addressing the media in Thiruvananthapuram, Alphons said that the sites identified under the circuit are spread across all 14 districts of the state and cover 133 religious places. He said the districts where the projects would be implemented are Kasargode, Wayand, Kannur, Kozhikode, Palakkad, Malappuram, Thrissur, Ernakulam, Idukki, Alappuzha, Kottayam, Pathanamhitta, Kollam and Thiruvanathapuram. The Minister said the destinations have been selected keeping in view the inherent historic, cultural and religious significance of the places. The development works include community hall, Annadhana Mandapam, multipurpose hall, toilets, cafeteria, parking facilities, landscaping, pathways, illuminations, signages, dustbins, etc. The circuit covers religious sites all across the state from Ananthapadmanabhaswamy Temple in the northernmost district of Kasargode to the Madre De Deus Church in Thiruvanathapuram, the southernmost district. The circuit will cover several historical religious sites across the state like the Cheraman Jumah Masjid (Kodungallooor), Koodalmanikyam temple (Irinjalakkuda), St Thomas Church (Malayattoor), Thriparayar Sreerama Temple (Thrissur), etc. In reply to a question, Alphons said that the sites have been identified after elaborate study and discussions with all stakeholders. He pointed out that 60 per cent of domestic tourism is related to spiritual circuits.

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Rs 190 crore projects sanctioned under Swadesh Darshan & PRASHAD schemes

The Ministry of Tourism has sanctioned four new projects for Rs 190.46 crores under the tourism infrastructure development schemes, Swadesh Darshan and PRASHAD in Meghalaya, Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh. Under north east circuit of Swadesh Darshan Scheme, the Ministry of Tourism has sanctioned the project ‘Development of West Khasi Hills (Nongkhlaw- Krem Tirot – Khudoi & Kohmang Falls – Khri River- Mawthadraishan, Shillong), Jaintia Hills (Krang Suri Falls- Shyrmang- Iooksi), Garo Hills (Nokrek Reserve, Katta Beel, Siju Caves)’ in Meghalaya for Rs. 84.95 crore. Through this project, the Ministry will be developing facilities like festival grounds, tourist facilitation centre, last-mile connectivity, public conveniences, cable suspension bridge, cafeteria, trekking routes, boating facilities, illumination, solid waste management, drinking water facility, caving facilities, visitor centres, adventure sports activities, craft haats, etc. in the state. Development of Gorakhnath Temple (Gorakhpur), Devipattan Temple (Balrampur) and Vatvashni Temple (Domariyagunj) has also been sanctioned for Rs 21.16 Crores under spiritual circuit of Swadesh Darshan scheme. The facilities being developed under this project include tourist facilitation centre, toilet blocks, pathways, shelters, landscaping, gazebos, illumination, CCTV camera, benches, dustbins, informative and directional signages, etc. Under the PRASHAD scheme, the ministry has sanctioned the project ‘Development of Govardhan’ in Mathura, Uttar Pradesh for Rs 39.74 crores. The sites taken up in the project include Govardhan Parikrama Marg, Kusum Sarovar, Chandra Sarovar and Manasi Ganga. The facilities like development of bus stand, toilets, illumination of ghats, parking, pathways, landscaping and beautification, PA system, benches, toilets, etc. are also being developed under the project. The ministry has also sanctioned the project ‘Development of Pilgrimage Amenities at Somnath – Phase II’ for Rs 44.59 crores under the PRASHAD scheme. The facilities being developed …

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Meghalaya CM inaugurates northeast circuit tourism project

Chief Minister of Meghalaya Conrad K Sangma has inaugurated the project “Development of North East Circuit: Umiam (Lake View) – U Lum Sohpetbneng- Mawdiangdiang – Orchid Lake Resort” in Umiam, Meghalaya, implemented under the Swadesh Darshan scheme of Ministry of Tourism, Government of India. Others present on the occasion were Metbah Lyngdoh, Minister of Tourism, Government of Meghalaya; Yogendra Tripathi, Secretary, Ministry of Tourism and Sanbor Shullai, Chairman, Meghalaya Tourism Development Corporation. The project was sanctioned by the Ministry of Tourism in July 2016 for Rs 99.13 crores. Under it, the ministry has developed facilities like traditional healing centre, tribal rejuvenation centre, tourist information centre, multi-purpose hall, log huts, cafeteria, sound and light show, souvenir Shops, water sports zone, zip line, canopy walk, trekking routes, cycling track, last-mile connectivity, caravan parking, public toilets and solid waste management. The nort-east region received a total of 1.69 lakh foreign tourists during 2017 as against 1.45 lakh in 2016 registering a growth of 16.7 per cent over 2016. The domestic tourist visits reached 95.47 lakhs in the year 2017 against 77.71 lakhs, registering impressive double-digit growth of 22.8 per cent over 2016.

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Government sanctions 11 projects to develop coastal circuit

The Central Government has sanctioned 11 projects for the development of coastal circuits in India for a total of over Rs 800 crore. This also includes the amount for the development of Sindhudurg coastal circuit in Maharashtra for Rs 82.17 crore, which was sanctioned in 2015-16. The coastal circuits are being developed under Ministry of Tourism’s Swadesh Darshan Scheme, which also aims at integrated development of theme-based tourist circuits. Apart from this, the Centre, under the assistance to Central Agencies Scheme, has sanctioned the upgradation and modernisation at International Cruise Terminal at Indira Dock, Mumbai for Rs 1,250 lakh during 2017-18 and the development of Kanoji Angre Lighthouse for Rs 1,500 lakh during 2016-17. Source: The New Indian Express

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Mobile audio guide app for five iconic sites: MOT

Minister of State (I/C) for Tourism, K J Alphons recently handed over a Memorandum of Understanding under the ‘Adopt a Heritage’ project to Resbird Technologies for development of a mobile audio guide app for five iconic sites. The five iconic sites for which the mobile Audio Guide App is to be developed are Amer Fort (Rajasthan), Kaziranga (Assam), Colva Beach (Goa), Kumarakom (Kerala) and Mahabodhi Temple (Bihar). During the function, Alphons also handed over the Letters of Intent to seven shortlisted agencies for consideration under the project in the presence of Tourism Secretary, Yogendra Tripathi. These agencies would become ‘Monument Mitras’ through the innovative concept of ‘Vision Bidding’, which will give them the opportunity to associate their CSR activities with a heritage site if the Vision Bid is selected. The ‘Adopt a Heritage: Apni Dharohar, Apni Pehchaan’ project is a collaborative effort between the Ministry of Tourism, Ministry of Culture and Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), and State/UTs Governments. It aims to involve public sector companies, private sector companies and corporate citizens/individuals to take up the responsibility for making our heritage and tourism more sustainable through development, operation and maintenance of world-class tourist infrastructure and amenities at ASI/ State heritage sites and other important tourist sites in India.  

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ICPB requests MOT to declare 2019 as ‘The Year of MiCE’

Being in the forefront for promoting India as a preferred MiCE destination for years, ICPB has now requested the Ministry of Tourism (MOT) to declare 2019 as ‘The Year of MiCE.’ Chander Mansharamani, Vice Chairman, ICPB, informs, “We have recommended to Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, to declare 2019 as ‘The Year of MiCE’, which will certainly give us an opportunity to organise a number of activities in collaboration with all stakeholders throughout the year to propagate the importance of MiCE and its economic and social impact, and also undertake various marketing activities to promote India as a preferred convention destination.” On the year gone by, he added, “The year 2018 has been very fruitful and full of activities. We conducted training programmes and a successful international road show in Europe, 11th Convention India Conclave in Kolkata. We also participated at various international trade shows. “There has also been a substantial increase in our membership in the last one year, also the one-time membership of eight State Government’s, has not only given us the financial benefits, but also has enhanced the status of ICPB. Now, we can truly call ourselves a pan-India bureau.” Regarding plans in the pipeline, he said, “We are planning two international residential training programmes with ICCA and IAPCO, apart from regular training programmes. We will be holding  the12th Convention India Conclave in Kochi for which we have initiated the process with Kerala Government. We hope to open  new ICPB State Chapters in two more states. We will be conducting road shows in India as well as international road shows in the UK and Europe. We will also aim for a greater participation of ICPB in …

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FAITH organises farewell dinner for former Tourism Secretary Rashmi Verma

The Federation of Associations in Indian Travel and Hospitality (FAITH) recently organised a farewell dinner for Rashmi Verma, Former Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, at the ITC Maurya, New Delhi. Verma superannuated from her position on November 30, 2018. Thanking her for her contribution to the inbound industry, Subhash Goyal, Secretary General, FAITH, said, “Rashmi Verma has been a great support to the industry in her tenure and has been instrumental in taking many initiatives during her tenure that have proven to be a gamechanger for the industry. The number of Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) to India crossed the 10 million mark during her tenure. She was a great support for organising the first India Tourism Mart (ITM) in New Delhi recently. She was also a call away for all of us whenever there was an issue plaguing the industry. It has been a pleasure for the industry to work with her and we would like to thank her for being a constant support for all of us.” Also present on the occasion was Yogendra Tripathi, Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, who has succeeded Verma recently. All the presidents and senior members of the associations that are part of FAITH were also present at the event.

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15 destinations identified for development under Ramayana Circuit

Ramayana Circuit has been identified for development under the Swadesh Darshan scheme of Ministry of Tourism. The Ministry had earlier identified fifteen destinations for development under the Ramayana Circuit theme namely Ayodhya, Nandigram, Shringverpur & Chitrakoot (Uttar Pradesh), Sitamarhi, Buxar & Darbhanga (Bihar), Chitrakoot (Madhya Pradesh), Mahendragiri (Odisha), Jagdalpur (Chattisgarh), Nashik and Nagpur (Maharashtra), Bhadrachalam (Telangana), Hampi (Karnataka) and Rameshwaram (Tamil Nadu). The details of projects sanctioned under the Ramayana Circuit theme of Swadesh Darshan during the last two years are: development of Ayodhya under Ramayana Circuit theme in Uttar Pradesh (2017-18) – Rs 133.31 cr sanctioned; development of Wayside Amenities in Buddhist Circuit and Ramayana Circuit: Varanasi-Gaya; Lucknow-Ayodhya- Lucknow; Gorakhpur-Kushinagar; Kushinagar-Gaya- Kushinagar (2018-19) – Rs 18.10 crore sanctioned. For the state of Chhattisgarh, the Ministry has sanctioned the project for development of Tribal Tourism Circuit in Jashpur- Kunkuri-Mainpat- Ambikapur- Maheshpur -Ratanpur- Kurdar-Sarodadadar- Gangrel- Kondagaon– Nathiya Nawagaon- Jagdalpur- Chitrakoot- Tirthgarh in the year 2015-16 with a total sanction amount of Rs 99.21 crore. Submission of project proposals by the State Governments/Union Territory (UT) Administrations under the Swadesh Darshan Scheme is a continuous process. The projects for development under the scheme are identified in consultation with the State Governments/UT Administrations and are sanctioned subject to availability of funds, submission of suitable detailed project reports, adherence to scheme guidelines and utilisation of funds released earlier.

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