Published on : Thursday, May 16, 2019
Hotel and Restaurant Association of Odisha (HRAO) Chairman JK Mohanty said that due to cyclone Fani there were property damages at Rs 500 crore and the local business lossed were estimated to be around Rs, 2000 crore for the current fiscal year.
Puri faced severe damages which houses 800 big and small hotels, however from Wednesday onwards two of the hotels in started operation with minimum capacity. It is expected that 70-80 percent of the hotels will start operations from the first week of June.
Mohanty went on saying that Puri hotels have lost a large number of bookings in terms of leisure travel and destination weddings. In Bhubaneswar a number of national and international conferences were cancelled. The losses of hotel industry have been huge as a result of the cyclone.
There was a workshop organized by the HRAO to decide on the Short Term & Long Term planning for development of the tourism sector of the State.
Odhisha received the lowest share in the country when the foreigh tourist arrivals was concerned. It was important to overcome the effects of the cyclone FANI and come up with Long Term Policy to get more domestic and foreign tourist arrivals to the State.
The HRAO’s short term plan included restoration of power, sewerage line cleaning and restoration of drainage systems at Puri on war footing. Further, there should be clear cut instruction by the Govt authorities to provide 2 years moratorium on the existing term loans for repayment.
The HRAO proposes the Government should exempt the employer’s contribution component for PF and ESI to be exempted for a period of two years for all the hoteliers.
Tax exemption for hotel industry on the heads of GST, Holding Tax, Municipal Tax and other relevant statutory taxes were also proposed by the HRAO.
To resolve the issues on priority basis a high level committee may be formed under the administrative control of the Tourism Secretary including the professionals from hotel and tourism industry.