Category Archives: States

More investment will come to J&K: FHRAI

“This decision of the government will help the people of Jammu and Kashmir the most because It is estimated that almost 50-60% of total population of J&K is directly and/or indirectly engaged in hospitality, tourism or related ancillary related activities, says, Gurbaxish Singh Kohli, Vice President, The Federation of Hotel & Restaurant Associations of India. According to him, tourism contributes about 15% to the state GDP. “Till now, despite being a leading industry of J&K, concrete steps of its economic impact on state are still lacking. This move will bring in more investment in all sectors, more industry movements, more private educational institutions, more jobs and more revenue will eventually come by, giving the otherwise bogged down state a huge impetus. Despite Kashmir ticking all the right boxes as a Hospitality & Tourism magnet, its presence and business in the state is dismal. Poverty and dependency on almost non-existent hospitality and tourism, except only in a couple of cities or areas lead the citizens to be misdirected towards nefarious activities which would now be to a large extent stand eradicated, he adds.

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Ladakh remains unaffected, expecting business to get better: ALTOA

According to Deleks Namgyal, General Secretary, All Ladakh Tour Operators Association (ALTOA), the demand for Ladakh to be declared as a Union Territory has been pending for a long time. He says, “We are happy, because the demand to separate Ladakh from Kashmir politics has been there for the last 30-35 years. Being a part of J&K has not really helped Ladakh’s development. For the past few days, there has been some unrest, but Ladakh has not been affected. Being a part of J&K, advisory was issued by some embassies, governments, as well as countries like US, because of which there were some concerns and enquiries by tourists travelling to Ladakh. We did get a circular, but ou region has not been under curfew. Road trips from Srinagar have been impacted. However, flight operations remain undisturbed and so does internet.”

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Tourism to remain unperturbed in J&K: Parvez Dewan

The government announced that Jammu and Kashmir would be a UT with a Legislature while the Ladakh region will be a separate UT without a legislature. Talking about its impact on tourism, Parvez Dewan, Former Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, says, “I don’t think tourism will get affected post this decision. The unrest or security issue is very temporary, and in the long run tourism will not be affected because these UTs will remain next to each other. Since 1994-95, a certain number of Mata Vaishno Devi pilgrims have always gone to Kashmir after the Darshan. Around 34 per cent of foreign tourists visiting Ladakh do it in combination with Kashmir and around 66 per cent might only go to Ladakh. Similarly, a certain percentage always do Jammu and Kashmir together, and that will continue.

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Goa welcomes 1 lakh more tourists this Jan-May, compared to last year

Goa received 27,19,154 tourists for the period from Jan-May 2019 compared to 26,22,387 for the same period last year, witnessing an increase of 96,767 arrivals. According to statistics released by Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC), the tourism arrivals into the state have increased in the last three years. While in 2016, the tourist arrivals were 63,30,744, in 2017 it went up to 77,85,693 and in 2018 it was 80,15,400. Last year, the increase was minimal owing to the charter flights that stopped operating to Goa, especially from Russia. Earlier this year, the Travel and Tourism Association of Goa had submitted a white paper about the decline in the tourism to Manohar Ajgaonkar, Minister of Tourism, Goa, urging the state government to take urgent steps to address the dip in arrivals.

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Goa Tourism bans single-use plastic in hotels

Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC) has banned single-use plastic in all its hotels. Nikhil Desai, Managing Director, GTDC, says, “GTDC hotels will strive to be plastic free. We have already started with our head office where we have banned all the plastic bottles etc. We have decided that we will reduce or completely do away with anything that has plastic. In the next step, all our hotels will stress on minimise the use of plastic like water bottles, and will shift to eco-friendly options like paper-based products, metal products or recyclable options, instead of going for one-time use plastics. Followed by its success, we will also ask the private players to join us. First we will show that it is possible for us to do it and lead a plastic free life. Once we are successful, we will request them that they should also follow the same.” This initiative comes in line with the bid to achieve the target that the state government has of making the state plastic-free by 2022.

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‘Clean Kerala Initiative’ to make prime tourist spots plastic and garbage free

In a bid to keep Kerala’s prime tourist spots plastic and garbage free, Kadakampally Surendran, Minister for Tourism, Co-operation and Devaswoms, Government of Kerala, launched the ‘Clean Kerala Initiative’ piloted by Responsible Tourism (RT) Mission in co-operation with stakeholders in the tourism sector. Flagging off the project and a two-day workshop at Chaithram Hotel in Thiruvananthapuram, he lauded the role of RT Mission in rejuvenating the tourism sector by promoting good practices. “If we want to attract tourists, we have to create beautiful and hygienic destinations. So, we have to effectively implement the plastic and garbage-free mission. Local bodies, by associating with RT, can play a vital role as we need scientific intervention by adopting paper bags, cloth bags, glass bottles, etc,” he said. Nine destinations – Kovalam, Munnar, Alappuzha, Kumarakom, Wayanad, Fort Kochi, Kollam, Thekkady, and Bakel have been identified for implementation of the new project in the first phase from a list of 21 destinations. The project will take these tourist centres to a Green certification platform by making them the focus of eco-friendly and responsible tourism activities. “The government’s policy is that the development of tourism will be ensured by giving priority to the interests of people and due consideration to the environment. One can’t ignore the tremendous impact created by RT Mission in achieving this goal,” the Minister pointed out.

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Tamil Nadu Travel Mart to focus on Medical Tourism

The upcoming Tamil Nadu Travel Mart (TTM), scheduled from September 19-22, at Chennai Trade Centre, will have a parallel event- Tamil Nadu Medical Travel Mart, in association with Health Department Government of Tamil Nadu. The event will reiterate the importance of Tamil Nadu in the medical value travel sector. India has the finest and one of the largest pools of doctors and paramedics in South Asia, with many of them being of global repute. India’s expertise in highly specialized areas of organ transplants, orthopaedics, cardiology, oncology, neurology etc. has made the country an emerging hotspot for Medical Value Travel (MVT). The three-day conference and exhibition would also have B2B meetings. The two-day conference would focus on not only making Tamil Nadu as preferred Medical Tourism destination (In terms of safety, quality, cost and clinical excellence), but also health insurance; role of healthcare facilitator; role of Government to promote MVT; challenges in health Insurance & MVT; regulations in MVT (VISA Liberalisation Policy); importance of cultural competency / support services in international patient care (language, food, transport); and the future of telemedicine & MVT.

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Odisha to roll out new tourism policy by 2020

The Odisha Tourism department is working towards releasing a new tourism policy for the state by 2020, informed, VishalKumar Dev, Commissioner-cum-Secretary to Government, Tourist Department, Government of Odisha. He also said that the department is looking to aggressively promote water sports activities and recreational projects in the state as well as introducing houseboats at the popular tourist destinations like Chilika and Bhitarkanika. “The government is mulling out plans to revise the existing tourism policy, we will be ready with the new policy by next year. The government has been aggressively promoting water sports and recreational tourism in the state. We are laying focus on niche tourism segments such as houseboats tourism, which seamlessly mingles with ecotourism water recreation. We shall strive to synergize the various segments of water-based tourism as a sustainable segment. The state has embarked on a project to diversify its tourism offering by exploring the potential of its waterbodies, wetlands and coastline,” revealed Dev at the Odisha Tourism roadshow organised in Delhi. With the tourism sector contributing 13 per cent to Odisha’s GDP, the tourist inflow CAGR was recorded 9.1 percent during 2013 to 2017. The state government is expecting 2.4 crore tourist in 2020-21, up from 1.5 crore in 2018. Besides, the Integrated Coastal Zone Management Project (ICZMP) has also proposed the government to start cruise service in Chilika Lake in association with Forest and Environment and Tourism department.

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Gujarat to come up with heritage tourism policy, records 14% growth in 2018-19

The Gujarat government is working to take out a heritage tourism policy, while focusing on attracting foreign tourists, said Jenu Devan, Managing Director & Commissioner of Tourism, Gujarat Tourism. He also said that the state has registered 14 per cent growth in the number of tourists in 2018-19. “In 2016-17, tourists’ inflow was 4.48 crore and the same went up to almost 5.8 crore in 2018-19. The annual growth rate was 14 per cent. With the trend of increasing tourists’ footfalls, we are expecting that tourist inflow should cross six crore in the current fiscal. About six lakh foreign tourists visit the state last year. The state is preparing a heritage tourism policy and approval for this will come shortly. At present, there are 33 heritage properties. With the implementation of the policy, more of such properties will come within tourism map” said Devan. He also said that two prominent tourist sites – Somnath and Dholavira – would be developed into iconic tourism destinations as a part of the Central government’s Swadesh Darshan Scheme.

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Goa Tourism Board reconstituted, appoints 12 directors

Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC) has reconstituted its board, under which it has appointed 12 directors. Dayanand Sopte, who is also one of the appointed directors, will continue to be the Chairman of GTDC, according to its Article of Association. Ashok Kumar is Secretary Tourism, Goa; Nikhil Desai remains the Managing Director; Sanjiv Gadkar is Tourism Director; and Savio Messais is the President, Travel and Tourism Association of Goa. Other appointed directors are: Shrikant Azgaonkar, Sudesh Sawant, Suchana Gadekar, Mohammad Modassir, Anand Khandeparkar, Vishwanath Tirodkar, Deepraj Prabhu.

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