Published on : Monday, June 14, 2021
Summer is the peak season for tourism in the hills. Affected with lockdown-like restrictions, hoteliers in Uttarakhand have asked the state to dissolve the weekend curfews and weekday restrictions that are currently in place due to the ongoing Covid curfew in Uttarakhand.
In Kumaon, hoteliers said that while tourists are ready to get RT-PCR tests done for visiting the hill station, they are reluctant to visit as long as shops remained closed most of the time. Restaurant owners also demanded that dining needs to be allowed with at least 50-75% occupancy.
Nainital hotels and restaurant association’s secretary, Ved Sah said that the summer is already approaching its end and none of the hotels had opened since there were zero tourists.
“Most of the tourists in Nainital come from Delhi and NCR regions but due to strict Covid restrictions in the state, they do not want to travel. Even though some hotels have opened, barely one or two of their rooms have been booked,” said Sah.
Sah said that hoteliers met with local officials and politicians, asking for a solution regarding the financial damage of the tourism industry. “Even though our hotels are closed, we have been paying all the bills and taxes for their upkeep.
There is no respite. Now if another summer goes without tourists, not many of us will be able to stay afloat,” he said.
Last week, shop owners, hoteliers and boat operators held a protest in Mallital, pleading for money. The protest was against the ongoing Covid curfew in Uttarakhand, due to which shops are open for fixed hours on select days. The traders said that if this continues, tourists will never come to Uttarakhand and they will be forced to beg.
Shopkeepers in the queen of hills said that the curfew must end so businesses can get back on track.