Tag Archives: Secretary

Tourism Secretary, Rashmi Verma, inaugurates India pavilion at WTM London 2018

The India pavilion at World Travel Market 2018 in London was packed with activities for the trade and consumers alike. Addressing a press conference, Rashmi Verma, Secretary-Tourism, Government of India, enlisted the achievements of the Ministry. Accompanying Verma were Pramod Kumar Singh, Tourism Minister, Bihar; Vellamandi N Natarajan, Tourism Minister, Tamil Nadu; Aashima Mehrotra, Director, Ministry of Tourism and Charanjeet Singh, Deputy High Commissioner of India to the UK. Verma highlighted, “Last year has been a very good year for India tourism with a growth of about 14 per cent in foreign tourist arrivals and about 19 per cent in terms of foreign receipts, much more than the global growth of 6.8 per cent. We also crossed the 10 million mark for the first time. This was possible because of our adoption of the multi-pronged strategy. We focus hugely on creating world-class infrastructure in and around our tourist sites.” She pointed out, “Incredible India 2.0 campaign is more thematic in nature. Looking at the needs and demands of major markets like the US and the UK, we have made some thematic films on niche products like adventure, yoga, Ayurveda, etc. This campaign focuses heavily on social media besides print and electronic media. We are hopeful that through this new Incredible India campaign we will be able to encourage people to revisit india, stay longer and experience the various products we have on offer.” The MOT also recently concluded two new events — India Tourism Mart (ITM) and Paryatan Parv —to create awareness about India both internationally and domestically. “More than 250 foreign buyers participated at the first-ever ITM. Buddhist Conclave was also held to showcase various Buddhist destinations in India.” The key initiative of introduction …

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F1H2O Grand Prix to be held in Andhra Pradesh from November 16-18

Amaravati, the capital of Andhra Pradesh, is set to host the fifth round of F1H2O World Championship from November 16-18. Hosted by Andhra Pradesh Tourism Authority, the event is believed to position Amaravati on the world map. Mukesh Kumar Meena, Secretary, Tourism & Culture, Government of Andhra Pradesh, along with Marco Pietrini, Director of Logistics, F1H2O and Sandeep Mandava, CEO, India Xtreme Adventure Activities, organised a press conference in New Delhi, to share updates about the event. Speaking at the conference, Meena revealed, “The F1H2O World Championship is going to be held in India for the second time after 14 years. With a global event like this, Amaravati will be recognised world over. In fact, there will also be a Team Amaravati with two key race drivers from Sweden—Jonas Anderson and Erk Edwin, who have been participating in all the legs of the race. In Amaravati, the race will be held in River Krishna and all the logistics and arrangements will be of international standards.”

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International Buddhist Conclave to boost tourism to Buddhist sites in India

President Ram Nath Kovind inaugurated the International Buddhist Conclave (IBC), 2018 at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi  in the presence of KJ Alphons, Minister of State (I/C), Tourism; Rashmi Verma, Secretary, Tourism; Satyajit Rajan, Director General, Tourism; ministerial delegates from Bangladesh, Indonesia, Myanmar and Sri Lanka. Travel trade representatives from India and various other countries were also present for the conclave. Addressing the audience, Kovind said, “India is the land of Buddha and this initiative by Ministry of Tourism would attract visitors from around the world to come to India and experience the Buddhist destinations in the country.” The first day of the conclave also included presentations by the Ministry of Tourism and state governments on Buddhist tourism prospects in the country. An investor’s summit was also going on alongside the conclave to look for investment opportunities in the Buddhist tourism sector in the country. A B2B session was also conducted between foreign and Indian tour operators along with a panel discussion on ‘Role of Living Buddhist Heritage in the Contemporary Society’. The Conclave is being organised by the Ministry of Tourism in collaboration with the state governments of Maharashtra, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh from August 23-26, 2018 at New Delhi and Ajanta (Maharashtra).

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Kannur airport to start operations from October 1

Commercial operations are all set to start from Kannur International Airport in Kerala from October 1, 2018. This was recently announced at a joint press conference by Suresh Prabhu, Union Minister, Civil Aviation, along with KJ Alphons, Minister of State (I/C), Tourism; Jayant Sinha, Minister of State, Civil Aviation; as well as RN Choubey, Secretary, Civil Aviation. The officials shared that all the pending licences would be cleared before September 1 and the final aerodrome licence would also be given by that date. The airport will play a major role under the UDAN scheme of the government. Also, three domestic carriers will be operating international flights from this airport. Jet Airways will be flying to Abu Dhabi; Go Air would ply to Dammam and IndiGo will be flying to Doha from Kannur airport.

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Rashmi Verma highlights 3-pronged strategy at PATA India’s Tourism PowerHouse

Highlighting areas where the Ministry of Tourism will spend more on promotional activities, Rashmi Verma, Secretary, Tourism and Chairman, PATA India Chapter, spoke of the Ministry’s three-pronged strategy at PATA India’s first-ever Tourism PowerHouse held at The Park, New Delhi. “We have a three-pronged strategy for increasing inflow to the country. First, we have G2G interactions; 16 MOUs have been signed in this regard. The second is promoting through B2B interactions, where we have employed a number of methods. We have been participating in all major world tourism marts that give us an excellent opportunity. Apart from that, we have roadshows in which we lead a delegation of the industry and give a platform to them for further networking. This year, we’re taking things a step forward and organising India Travel Mart in September, which is likely to get 250 buyers from around the world. The third part of the strategy is more B2C interactions. How we reach out to consumers is the third aspect of our strategy,” she elaborated.

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PATA adventure travel to be held in Rishikesh from February 13-15, 2019

More than 300 foreign delegates are expected to participate in the PATA adventure travel conference, to be held in Rishikesh from February 13-15, 2019, a senior official said. PATA Adventure Travel and Responsible Tourism Conference and Mart 2019 (ATRTCM) would be hosted by the Uttarakhand Tourism Development Board. “Uttarakhand won bid this time. The travel mart is a better way of showcasing the state to international clients,” said Dilip Jawalkar, Secretary, Uttarakhand Tourism. The event, that brings together public and private sector players involved in the adventure tourism, would be held from Responding to a query on whether there was any financial bidding for hosting the event, he replied in the negative. “One has to commit tourist facilities for visiting travel agents like accommodation, transportation, site seeing, etc.” he added. This year, the conference was held in Abu Dhabi.

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Tourism minister launches first-ever safety guidelines on adventure tourism

KJ Alphons, Minister of State (I/C), Tourism, Government of India, has launched the Indian Adventure Tourism Guidelines along with Rashmi Verma, Secretary, Tourism; Satyajeet Rajan, Director General, Tourism; Suman Billa, Joint Secretary, Tourism and Swadesh Kumar, President, Adventure Tourism Association of India (ATOAI). A total of 26 activities have been covered in the guidelines including land, air and water based activities. The guidelines have been put in place to make the unorganised sector to adopt them. These guidelines will be reviewed every three months. In an effort to make adventure sports safer, the set of guidelines lists out the basic minimum standards required for adventure tourism activities in India. Adventure tourism has grown rapidly over the past few years playing a vital role in the economic growth of India as well as attracting a large number of travellers from across the globe to the country. The sole aim is to help adventure tour operators understand and execute safety guidelines in a better manner. These guidelines cover activities like mountaineering, trekking, bungee jumping, paragliding, kayaking, scuba diving, snorkelling, river rafting and many other sports.

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TAAI-NR holds general meeting for members of northern region

Travel Agents Association of India – Northern Region (TAAI-NR) recently held a meeting for its members at ITC Maurya, New Delhi. Gaurav Dogra, Secretary, TAAI-NR, said, “We discussed various queries of the members and updated them about TAAI Connect. TAAI Connect will help empower the members to have their own websites and mobile apps for better customer services.” Anil Khaitan, President, PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry was also present to share the highlights of MoU signed between TAAI and PHD Chamber of Commerce, and how they would help to overcome the obstacles faced by TAAI members in their respective business.

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10th Great Indian Travel Bazaar kicks off in Jaipur with 280 buyers & 270 exhibitors

The 10th edition of Great Indian Travel Bazaar (GITB) opened with 280 foreign buyers from 55 countries and 270 exhibitors at The Lalit Jaipur on April 22. Committed to boost tourism in India, the inbound show was inaugurated by Vasundhara Raje, Chief Minister, Rajasthan; Rashmi Verma, Secretary, Ministry of Tourism; Jyotsna Suri, Chairperson, FICCI Tourism Committee; Dipak Deva, Co-Chairman, FICCI Tourism Committee; Nihal Chand Goel, Additional Chief Secretary (Tourism, Art & Culture), among other officials from the Government of Rajasthan. The show, celebrating a decade of successfully promoting inbound tourism in Rajasthan, hopes to cross the 11,000 mark in terms of pre-scheduled B2B meetings between the exhibitors and buyers. Raje said, “It is heartening to see such an enthusiastic participation at GITB. The tourism sector has seen a new vigour and dynamism after the launch of the campaign ‘Jane Kya dikh Jaye’. Our vision was to get 50 million tourists in Rajasthan by 2020 but by the end of 2017 itself, the state received 47.5 million tourists and we would compete our target by the end of 2018.” Raje also thanked the central government for the financial support provided for the state’s various tourism projects. An MoU was also singed on behalf of the Government of Rajasthan and FICCI under which the GITB will continue to be hosted till 2024. The dates for the next edition of the show in Jaipur are April 28-30, 2019.  

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Kerala records 10.9% rise in tourist arrivals in 2017

Tourist arrivals to Kerala have registered a significant growth of 10.93 per cent during 2017, compared to figures of the previous year. According to statistics compiled by Kerala Tourism, Kerala saw as many as 15.54 lakh tourists including both domestic and foreign travellers during the year. An increase of 15 lakh new domestic tourists was recorded this year, with footfalls going up to 1,46,73,520 in 2017 as against 1,31,72,535 in 2016. As per the report, it was found that foreign tourists preferred travelling to Thiruvananthapuram and Ernakulam districts, while also opting for destinations like Alappuzha, Munnar and Wayanad. In terms of specific locations, both foreign and domestic tourists were found to have preferred Kochi as a prime destination. According to Kadakampally Surendran, Minister for Tourism, Cooperation and Devaswoms, the statistics show up encouraging trends in terms of increasing footfalls both in the international as well as domestic segments. Rani George IAS, Secretary, Department of Tourism, said, “The trend in tourist arrivals over the past five years has shown a marked change in the pattern of tourist visits to different destinations. It is exciting that more destinations are being sought after by tourists, and that shows more destinations in Kerala are gaining in prominence in travellers’ minds.”  

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