Category Archives: MOT

Incredible India Roadshows in USA, Canada and Africa in June and July 2019

The Ministry of Tourism, Government of India will organise Incredible India Roadshows in the US and Canada and Africa in June and July 2019 respectively as per following schedule: USA & Canada Roadshows; June 24, 2019- Washington DC, June 25- Boston, June 26-Vancouver, June 27- Seattle, June 28-San Francisco and Africa Roadshows; July 01-Johannesburg, July 03-Durban and July 05-Port Louis. A high-level delegation from the ministry will accompany them, details of the same will come forth in due course. All trade and hospitality associations have been requested to circulate the above schedule for the roadshows and forward consolidated list of confirmed participants to the Tourism Ministry for necessary action.

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Meenakshi Sharma is the new DG Tourism

1988-batch officer of the Indian Audit and Accounts Service, Meenakshi Sharma has been appointed  the new Director General (Tourism) with the rank of Additional Secretary. The appointment comes amid a senior-level bureaucratic reshuffle by the Central Government. She will take over charge from former Director General, Satyajeet Rajan. At present, she is Additional Director General (Tourism), Ministry of Tourism. In 2016, she was appointed  Additional Director General, Ministry of Tourism replacing Usha Sharma, a 1985 batch IAS officer of Rajasthan cadre. She used to look after Administration-1, Establishment & Vigilance Division, Overseas Marketing Division, Domestic Offices Division, PSU Division including ITDC, Travel Division, Territorial Zone Division (West), PRASAD Scheme, Planning & Coordination Division, IT Division.  

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Tourism to boost economy; 17 tourist sites to be redeveloped: Suman Billa

Ministry of Tourism has identified 17 sites in 12 clusters in the country for development under Iconic Tourist Sites Development Project, pursuant to Budget Announcements of 2018-19. Suman Billa, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Tourism says, “One of the big plans that we are working on is to develop our iconic sites. We have picked out the 17 most iconic sites in India like the Taj Mahal, Kaziranga and we are working backwards to make them world class. We think that all the first-cut master plans are done, so I think that will be a big push as to how we can really make these most iconic sites as truly world-class tourist experiences.” Speaking on the growth of tourism in the country he said, “There is no doubt that tourism will emerge as an economic engine for growth for this country and I don’t think there will be any confusion on that politically. Whatever work that we have been doing and the way that the tourism sector has been pulling together that will continue strongly.” The sites that will be redeveloped are- Uttar Pradesh- Taj Mahal & Fatehpur Sikri; Maharashtra- Ajanta & Ellora; Delhi- Humayun’s Tomb, Red Fort & Qutub Minar; Goa- Colva beach; Rajasthan- Amer Fort; Gujarat- Somnath & Dholavira; Madhya Pradesh- Khajuraho; Karnataka- Hampi; Tamil Nadu- Mahabalipuram; Assam- Kaziranga; Kerala- Kumarakom; Bihar- Mahabodhi.

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MOT considers scrapping Group Landing Permit for passengers of e-visa countries

Currently, the GLP facility works as a visa for foreign tourists who are arriving in groups of four or more. Tourists who are sponsored by Indian travel agencies approved by the tourism ministry with a pre-drawn itinerary are granted collective landing permits for a period not exceeding 60 days, with multiple entry facility to enable them visit a neighboring country. Considering the feedback received, a view has been taken that Group Landing Permit facility may be scrapped for passengers of those countries which have been extended e-Visa facility, as its sole purpose has been served and because, e-Visa facility has been presently extended to 166 countries.  

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Cabinet approves MoU between India and Croatia in the field of tourism

The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has given its ex-post facto approval on the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Croatia in the field of tourism. The MoU in the field of tourism will help the two parties in creating an institutional mechanism for enhancing cooperation in the tourism sector. The MoU has been signed on 26 March, 2019 during the visit of President of India to Croatia.

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India bags first prize in ‘TV Cinema Spot’ Golden City Gate Tourism Awards 2019

The Ministry of Tourism, Government of India has won the First Prize in the category of TV Cinema Spot at the prestigious international Golden City Gate Tourism Awards 2019. The awards were received by Yogendra Tripathi, Secretary,Tourism on March 8, 2019 at ITB, Berlin. Following promotional films/television commercials produced by the Ministry as part of its Incredible India 2.0 Campaign received the awards: Yogi of the Racetrack The Reincarnation of Mr. and Mrs. Jones Sanctuary in Paris Maharani of Manhattan and The Masala Master Chef The Golden City Gate Tourism Multi-media Awards are given annually in various categories related to the Tourism and Hospitality sectors. The ‘Golden City Gate’ is a creative multi-media international competition for countries, cities, regions and hotels. The entries received for the awards are judged by an international jury comprising film and tourism experts. The annual award ceremony takes place at ITB Berlin, the world’s leading tourism trade show. The Ministry of Tourism has launched the Incredible India 2.0 Campaign in September 2017. The 2.0 Campaign marks a shift from generic promotions across the world to market specific promotional plans and content creation. Thematic creatives on different Niche tourism products have been produced and are being used in the Campaign, to cater to diverse consumer interests.These include the above Television Commercials on Yoga, Wellness, Wildlife, Luxury and Cuisine, which have been very well received the world over, registering about 155 million views on social media. The commercials have been produced in English with voice overs in 9 international languages, viz. German, French, Spanish, Italian, Russian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Arabic.

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Cabinet approves Swadesh Darshan Scheme

Under Swadesh Darshan Scheme, Ministry of Tourism is developing critical tourism infrastructure in the country in a sustainable and inclusive manner to make India into a world class tourist destination. The focus under the scheme is to develop public facilities like last-mile connectivity, tourist reception centers, wayside amenities, solid waste management, illumination, landscaping, parking etc. where private sector is not willing to invest. The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved the following proposals: 1. Continuation of the Swadesh Darshan Scheme during 14th Finance Commission period and beyond; 2. Rs. 2055.96 crores for 60 on-going projects completing in December 2019; and 3. Rs. 324.09 crores for 6 projects for which substantial funds have been released and projects to be completed in September 2020. Details: Swadesh Darshan Scheme – Integrated Development of theme based tourist circuits is the flagship scheme of Ministry of Tourism for development of tourism infrastructure in the country. The scheme has following objectives: 1. Position tourism as a major engine of economic growth and job creation; 2. Develop circuits having tourist potential in a planned and prioritized manner; iii. Promote cultural and heritage value of the country to generate livelihoods in the identified regions; iv. Enhance the tourist attractiveness in a sustainable manner by developing world class infrastructure in the circuit/destinations; v. Follow community based development and pro-poor tourism approach; vi. Create awareness among the local communities about the importance of tourism for them in terms of increased sources of income, improved living standards and overall development of the area. vii. Create employment through active involvement of local communities; viii. Harness tourism potential for its effects in employment generation and economic development. ix. …

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National Tourism Advisory Council to meet today and tomorrow

Union Tourism Minister, K J Alphons, will chair the National Tourism Advisory Council (NTAC) meeting to be held on February 21- 22, 2019, at the site of the newly made Statue of Unity, Kevadiya in Gujarat. Apart from regular members of the NTAC, experts from the hospitality, travel and tour industry have been invited to attend the meeting. The objective of the brainstorming would be how to achieve a target of 5 million visitors to the Statue of Unity by next year. The world’s tallest statue of the iconic leader Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel is 182 meter tall. The National Tourism Advisory Council (NTAC) serves as a think tank of the Ministry of Tourism. The present NTAC was constituted on 20th October, 2016 under the Chairmanship of the Minister of Tourism with tenure of 3 years. The committee constitutes important Ministries, individual experts in the field of travel and tourism management and Ex-offico members from the industry associations. Last meeting of the NTAC was held ion 12th April,

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Alphons inaugurates Eco Circuit project in Kerala

K J Alphons, Union Minister for Tourism has inaugurated the project ‘Development of Eco Circuit: Pathanamthitta – Gavi – Vagamon – Thekkady’ under the Swadesh Darshan scheme of Ministry of Tourism in the presence of K Surendran, Minister for Tourism, Government of Kerala at Vagamon in Kerala. This Eco Circuit project was sanctioned in December 2015 for Rs 76.55 crores.  Major works carried out under the project includes Eco Adventure Tourism Park at Vagamon, Cultural Centre at Kadamanitta, Eco Log Huts at Peerumedu, Idukki, Approach Roads, walking trails, rain shelters at Pine Valley Forest, Thekkady, Kumily, Moozhiyar Dam, Penstock and Kakki Dam. Swadesh Darshan scheme is one of the flagship schemes of Ministry of Tourism for development of thematic circuits in the country in a planned and prioritised manner. Under this scheme the Government is focussing on development of quality infrastructure in the country with objective of providing better experience and facilities to the visitors on one hand and on other hand fostering the economic growth. The scheme was launched in 2014 -15 and as on date the Ministry has sanctioned 77 projects worth projects for Rs. 6131.88 crore to 30 states and UTs. 30 projects / major components of projects are expected to be completed during the current financial year, of which 12 projects worth Rs 1024.49 crore, covering the states of Manipur, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh Kerala and Sikkim have already been inaugurated. The Ministry of Tourism recognising the tourism potential of the state has sanctioned seven projects in Kerala under the Swadesh Darshan and PRASHAD schemes for an approximate amount of Rs 550 crores.

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Cabinet approves India-Saudi Arabia MoU to strengthen tourism ties

The Union Cabinet has approved the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India and the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for strengthening cooperation in the field of tourism. The main objectives of the MoU are to exchange information and expertise in legislations in the tourism development, hotels, resorts and tourist accommodation facilities, tourism data and statistics, exhibition events and other tourism activities in States of the Parties, tourism development, planning and investment; introduce tourism investment opportunities available in the States of the Parties; encourage mutual tourism investment in tourism projects; encourage organising joint tourism events; participate in exhibitions, conferences and seminars held in the States of the Parties thus contributing to tourism development and crystalising a joint tourism vision. India and Saudi Arabia have enjoyed a strong diplomatic and long economic relationship. Saudi Arabia is one of the potential tourist generating market for India from Middle East. The signing of MoU with Saudi Arabia will be instrumental in increasing arrival from this source market.

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