Category Archives: States

HRAO to organise workshop on tourism development in western Odisha on June 20

The Hotel & Restaurant Association of Odisha (HRAO) is set to organise a state-level workshop on the development of tourism in western Odisha on June 20. The workshop, scheduled to be held at Hotel The Grand Siba in Sambalpur, will be attended by hoteliers, tour operators, travel agents and other stakeholders. Important decision makers, government officials, media and political leaders have also been invited to give their inputs for giving a boost to the tourism growth of Western Odisha. With the addition of Jharsuguda, Rourkela and Jeypore airports in the state, the association now wants to make Odisha a 21-night destination. “With the benefits of the new tourism policy, the HRAO is now willing to spread out with additional 5000 rooms in all tourist locations of the state, specially Western Odisha. Currently, we have the lowest number of star hotels (10 hotels) and classified rooms (670 rooms) in Odisha,” said J K Mohanty, Chairman – HRAO & IATO, Eastern Region.

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KTDC ties up with Cleartrip as its online booking partner

Cleartrip has tied up with the Kerala Tourism Development Corporation (KTDC) as its exclusive online booking partner for local tours and activities. Under the association, KTDC will sell all of its exclusive set of activities through the Cleartrip platform, including both existing and new inventory of conducted tours and boat trips. The partnership is also Cleartrip’s first with a government tourism board, marking a major milestone for the online travel agency. Commenting on the association, Ankit Rastogi, VP- Experiences and Accommodation, Cleartrip, said, “The biggest benefit of this tie-up will be to the travellers, who now can access and book all of KTDC’s inventory of tours and activities online on a single platform. We hope that this partnership will spur more such associations where Cleartrip partners with other government tourism promoters to make their offerings available through its online portal.” Mr Rajmohan, Marketing Manager, KTDC, commented, “Our goal is to extend greater convenience in terms of planning and booking these popular activities. We have recently launched a new set of conducted tours to highlight local experiences which best convey the state’s distinct culture and heritage. Cleartrip’s pioneering efforts in the tours and activities space made it our first choice when it came to choosing a partner to help us connect with and engage young travellers.”

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Maharashtra hosts Global Exhibition on Services in Mumbai

Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) has participated in the Global Exhibition on Services (GES) to showcase the tourism potential of the state in agritourism, medical tourism, Buddhist tourism, etc to attract visitors from around the world. The fourth edition of GES aims to increase trade services between India and the globe. On the occasion of World Agritourism Day, MTDC is promoting agritourism as the state has huge potential and farmers can take up agritourism to boost their income. It is also promoting medical tourism and Buddhist tourism to tap the new avenues of tourist attraction. MTDC is also encouraging Buddhist pilgrimage in Maharashtra by developing sites where Lord Buddha was born, taught, preached and attained nirvana. Jaykumar Rawal, Minister of Tourism, Government of Maharashtra, who was present at the inauguration, said, “This is an excellent platform to grow our businesses and meet the new stakeholders from across the world. GES 2018 is a wonderful opportunity to aggressively market the tourism inventories, lively culture, exclusive destinations and investment prospects in Maharashtra.” Vijay Gautam, (IAS), Principal Secretary, Department of Tourism, Government of Maharashtra, added, “We have observed that tourism as one of the fastest growing industries worldwide. Through GES 2018, we are promoting our tourism inventories like medical tourism, agritourism and Buddhist tourism. We are now looking to create a unique identity by offering best services for the world and establish ourselves as the best tourism destination and it will pave a way for creating a roadmap for the state.”

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Meghalaya governor urges Japan Ambassador to lift travel advisory

Claiming that overall security condition has improved in Meghalaya, Governor Ganga Prasad sought withdrawal of travel advisory by the Japan consulate cautioning its citizens not to travel to the hill state. The travel advisory has been issued to Japanese citizens for quite a long time against visiting Meghalaya in view of internal security apprehensions in the state. Some data relating to the improved security situation of Meghalaya has been obtained and shared with the ambassador so that appropriate steps could be taken to review the situation (adverse travel advisory), Prasad said in a note to Japan Ambassador Kenji Hiramatus. The note was given when the Japanese Ambassdor had called on the governor at Raj Bhawan in Shillong. Prasad said this (withdrawal of the travel advisory) will help build a long-term relationship between the people of Japan and India. The governor was quoted by an official as briefing the Ambassador of the states unique opportunity for tourists from Japan to visit. The state is home to Sohra (erstwhile Cherrapunji) which is known for receiving the world’s heaviest rainfall in a single day besides the recent development in which the longest sandstone cave (nearly 25 km in length) was discovered in Mawsynram. The governor also sought assistance of Japanese experts to facilitate introducing cultivation of Shiitake mushroom in the state, taking advantage of similar climatic condition as in that country. He said Meghalaya have native species of woody trees that are suitable for Shiitake mushroom cultivation and farmers can benefit immensely. Source PTI  

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Northeastern cultural and info centre to come up in Delhi

A Northeastern cultural and information centre, showcasing the vibrant culture of the region, will come up in Delhi soon, Union Minister Jitendra Singh has said. Singh disclosed this during a meeting on the ‘Roadmap for Implementation of Cabinet Approval of Schemes for North East Council’ in Delhi. The meeting reviewed the progress of various on-going projects in the Northeast region, an official statement said. Singh, Minister of State for Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), said the central government has been giving priority to the Northeastern region and the cultural and information centre will be a new gift to the people of the region. It is being built on 1.32 acre land in Dwarka and will act as a cultural convention and information hub of the region in Delhi, the minister said. Singh said it will have a library-cum-reading room with material on Northeastern region, an art gallery showcasing the region, an exhibition hall, a research centre, sale outlets as well guest houses. At present, the architecture, design and planning for the project are in process. The project is expected to be completed soon at an estimated cost of Rs 50-55 crore and it will be one of its kind in the country and will be a state-of-the-art project, he said. Source PTI

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MTDC gets tremendous response from tourism and hotel companies at ATM

Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) has signed multiple Letter of Intent (LOI) agreements with leading hotel chains, tourism companies and potential investors at the recently-concluded Arabian Travel Market (ATM) 2018. The agreements is the first step towards identification of partners to collaborate on the large opportunities of promotion of the State of Maharashtra as a medical tourism hub. Collaboration with large brands like BlueBay Hotels and Flora Hospitality has been signed to explore the areas of management and development of existing tourism locations in Maharashtra. In a bid to start identification of potential development and investment, agreements were signed with Eram Group and ITL Group offices from United Arab Emirates, Oman, Kuwait and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to promote Maharashtra as a preferred destination for medical, wellness, cultural, experiential and heritage tourism. Vijay Waghmare, Managing Director, MTDC said, “Arabian Travel Market 2018 was our first step towards creating a sustained campaign for promotion and establishment of Maharashtra to a wider international audience. Our participation in ATM 2018 was a huge success as we achieved our objectives of creating visibility and it has paved a way towards creating a roadmap for the state. We are looking forward to the next steps discussed with the partners and we are expecting some advancements in our mission for the State of Maharashtra by the next edition of ATM.”

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Foreigners can now visit protected areas in Nagaland, Mizoram and Manipur

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has relaxed the Protected Area Permit (PAP) for foreigners visiting Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland, except for those from Pakistan, Afghanisthan and China. The PAP will be valid for five years. These areas constitute some of the most pristine locations of the country which had been out of bounds till now for them without a special permit. The six decade old PAP regime from these areas has been relaxed from April 1, 2018. Under the Foreigners (Protected Areas) Order, 1958, all areas falling between the Inner line and the International Border of some states were declared as protected areas. These areas include whole of Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland and Sikkim, besides parts of Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand and Jammu and Kashmir. Some parts of Sikkim also fall under the protected area regime. It is believed that the government might lift PAP from other areas as well. The guidelines in place earlier did not allow a foreign national to visit a protected or restricted area unless the government is satisfied that there are extraordinary reasons to justify his or her visit. Foreigners, except citizens of Bhutan, if want to stay in a protected or restricted area, have to get a special permit from an authority with the power to issue such permits. In cases of the citizens of Afghanistan, China and Pakistan and foreign nationals of Pakistani origin, no permit, however, can be issued without the prior approval of the Union Home Ministry.  

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MTDC and Global Vipassana Pagoda in Gorai to create Buddhist Circuit

Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC), in association with Global Vipassana Pagoda in Gorai, is looking to encourage visitors across the globe to experience tool of meditation for individual and global wellness and peace. In 2014, the Union Ministry announced plans to develop new Circuits to cover routes of important Buddhist destinations of the country. The Global Vipassana Pagoda in Gorai focuses on the Vipassana form of meditation, which stresses on the systematic investigation of the self, a phenomenon that is unique to the Buddhist tradition. The Pagoda also provides an insight to Buddhism by engaging visitors in a healthy and spiritual way from the hustle and bustle of the city. The Circuits in the coastal area of Nalasopara, Chaityabhoomi in Dadar, the Mandapeshwar Caves in Borivali, the Kanheri Caves in Sanjay Gandhi National Park and the Elephanta Caves are definitely going to increase the flow of tourists in the State. Jaykumar Rawal, Minister of Tourism & (EGS), Government of Maharashtra conveys, “MTDC in association with the Global Vipassana Pagoda is promoting the Buddhist Circuit and wellness tourism in the state. Our aim is to endorse the Buddhist circuit, among other spiritual sites that engage people to experience and learn about the rich legacy through Buddhist monuments.”

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Rajasthan Tourism announces domestic travel mart from Jul 20-22 in Jaipur

The Department of Tourism, Government of Rajasthan has signed an MoU with the Federation of Hospitality and Tourism of Rajasthan (FHTR) for organising the ‘Rajasthan Domestic Travel Mart’ 2018. The event will be held from July 20-22 at the B.M. Birla Auditorium in Jaipur. The Department of Tourism will be the host state partner for the event. The MoU was signed between the Additional Director Tourism, Sanjay Pande and the President, FHTR, Bhim Singh in Jaipur. The chief guest on the occasion Chief Secretary, Rajasthan, Nihal Chand Goel said that the primary objective of ‘Rajasthan Domestic Travel Mart’ is to exclusively focus on the domestic tourists within Rajasthan from various parts of India. “The vision 2020 initiated by the CM had an objective of five crore tourist footfall in the state by the year 2020. But we have attained close to five crore tourists in the year 2017 itself and with new initiatives like this travel mart, we’d be able to achieve the set goal and probably outperform our own predicted numbers,” he said. President, FHTR, Bhim Singh said the sole objective is to increase tourism in Rajasthan by organising numerous road shows across the country. The event is also supported by HRAR, IHHA, RATO and ADTOI.

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Maharashtra to promote itself as medical and wellness destination at ATM

Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) has announced its participation in Arabian Travel Market (ATM) 2018, which will be held at the Dubai World Trade Centre from April 22-25, 2018. MTDC plans to promote Maharashtra as the preferred destination for medical and wellness tourism, showcase its touristic attractions, meet tourism professionals and promote the opportunities of investment in creating healthcare and tourism facilities. Speaking about the state government plans, Jaykumar Rawal, Minister of Tourism & Employment Guarantee Scheme, Government of Maharashtra said, “While the medical and wellness segment is largely untapped and caters to a niche segment of travellers we have seen a steady growth in this sector due to the quality and economically friendly services the state has to offer. Our goal is to position Maharashtra as a medical and wellness tourism hub. We are in the process of signing an MoU with the Indo-Arab Chambers of Commerce and Industries to highlight lucrative investment prospects within the sector.” Vijay Waghmare, Managing Director, MTDC said, “We are witnessing tourism as one of the fastest growing industries worldwide. Maharashtra has one of the best qualified professionals in each field and this holds true in the domain of medical and wellness as well. We are now looking to create a unique identity by offering best health services for the world and establish ourselves as the best Medical tourism destination. At ATM 2018, we will be promoting various activities ranging from yoga, meditation to natural therapies to name some which is provided in the state.”

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