Published on : Thursday, October 26, 2017
Delivering the valedictory speech at the Paryatan Parv, a 20-day-long nationwide tourism awareness building programme of Ministry of Tourism, in Delhi, Arun Jaitley, India’s Minister of Finance, has urged the government agencies and private tourism industry to shift their focus to improving the atmosphere of hospitality and warmth of the citizens in response to tourists to transform India into a destination of choice for foreign tourists.
Jaitley said that India has been able to address various issues related to connectivity, road infrastructure, etc., over the last few years, and it is time the tourism industry stresses on delivering tourism services with the hospitality and warmth for which India is known for.
While conceding that there is scope for improvement in quality of rail travel in India, Jaitley said that an initiative is underway to upgrade the station infrastructure at 400 identified stations in the country by involving the private sector. Without making any commitments on incentivising the hospitality sector in the mid-level segment, Jaitley said that India would require hotel rooms at all price points to cater to different segments of the travellers.
Jaitley gave away certificates of Expression of Interest to seven private companies from travel and tourism and financial sectors who have expressed interest to join hands with Ministry of Tourism in the ‘Adopt a Heritage’ scheme. The companies along with the adopted heritage sites: SBI Foundation (Jantar Mantar New Delhi), Yatra.com (Hampi, Karnataka, Leh Palace, Jammu & Kashmir, QutubMinar, Delhi, Hampi, Ajanta Caves, Maharashtra), Travel Corporation of India (Mattancherry Palace Museum, Kochi and Safdarjung tomb, Delhi), TK International (Sun Temple, Raja Rani Temple, Bhubaneswar, Ratnagiri Monuments), ATOAI (Gangotri Temple and StokKangri, Ladakh), Special Holidays Travel Pvt Ltd and Rotary Club of Delhi (Agrasen ki Baoli) and National Building Construction Corporation (NBCC) (Old Fort Delhi).
Speaking on the occasion, KJ Alphons, Minister of State for Tourism said that the Ministry of Tourism, along with State tourism boards and 18 departments of the Central government organised more than 1100 events across the country in the last 20 days to celebrate India’s tourism.