Tag Archives: Sarab Jit Singh

IATO releases list of contenders for its election on March 6, 2021

IATO has finalised the list of contenders for the forthcoming election of the association on March 6. The contenders are Lally Mathews and Rajiv Mehra for President, EM Najeeb and Sarab Jit Singh for Senior VP, Lajpat Rai and Ravi Gosain for VP, Rajesh Mudgill and Rajnish Kaistha for Honorary Secretary, and Sunil Mishra and Viney Tyagi for Honorary Treasurer.

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IRCTC likely to lower prices of luxury trains

Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) will be reducing the prices of luxury trains, informs Sarab Jit Singh, MD, Travelite (India) who recently attended IRCTC’s 1st Tourism Interactive Session with Travel Trade Partners and Associations. Singh informs that Ashwani Lohani, Chairman, Indian Railway Board, had a meeting with the major stakeholders in the travel trade, where he revealed this news. “Mr. Lohani is looking at rationalising the rates of luxury trains, which are extremely high at the moment. They will be starting the lowering down of rates with Maharaja Express. This is the first ever meeting by anybody from Railways with the travel trade. They had taken all notes and they will be taking necessary action which will benefit both tourism industry and railway board. It’s a very positive sign and we are very hopeful with Mr. Lohani taking such initiatives,” informed Singh.

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Government needs to rethink on taxes: FAITH

The 28 per cent tax on hotels is going to affect not only the hotel industry, but other businesses as well, said Sarab Jit Singh, Vice-Chairman, FAITH. He added, “It is a clear way to kill the travel and hospitality industry. Secondly, GST of 5 per cent on tour operators, which was already there. However, the government should look at if they want to promote tourism or their purpose is to earn tax money from tourism instead of generating employment and earn foreign exchange from this sector. They should decide if they want the tourism industry to perish or flourish. We are tired of knee-jerk reactions that we get from the government now and then. I think the government needs to rethink the decisions on taxes. We are having a meeting with FAITH and work on a consolidated approach to talk to the government on this.”

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Allocate more funds for commerce ministry

Sarab Jit Singh, Vice-Chairman, FAITH, appreciated the Finance Minister for taking cognizance of FAITH’s recommendations. “The positive in today’s budget is acceptance and announcement by the Finance Minister of creating five special tourism zones, which was FAITH’s recommendation. Secondly, the announcement for Incredible India branding to be relaunched internationally and 35 per cent increase for its allocation is also a positive from our perspective,” he says. He goes on to explain the flip side. “The negative point according to me is the fact that the government is saying that exports are going down. However, tourism is the only industry which can now bring foreign exchange and generate employment, and the only incentives we were getting from were from the Ministry of Commerce, whose total allocation in the budget has now been reduced. Thus, it is a counterproductive feature. If the government wants to increase imports and wants growth, they cannot have lesser allocation for commerce ministry.” He contemplates on the status of tourism industry post this budget and says, “Tourism in the country is not growing for many years. We have lost for decades together; we have lost marketplace completely internationally; as well as we have lost to competing countries. Until the government moves all the aspects together with full force, we will not have results. I agree that the Prime Minister should talk to the industry directly.”

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Some benefit for inbound tour operators likely

Sarab Jit Singh, Vice Chairman, FAITH, says, “While the service tax would increase to 60 per cent, the government has allowed input credit, which might neutralise the effect of service tax. However, I feel that inbound tourism might not be affected much because of this rule. In fact, there might be some benefit for inbound tour operators in the long run. It will be outbound tour operators, which will see the impact of this announcement. I feel that this ruling is part of government’s move towards GST. Such measures would force people to do business legitimately.

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