Expanding Scope Of India’s Tourism Sector - Eastern Mirror
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Editorial

Expanding Scope of India’s Tourism Sector

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By The Editorial Team Updated: Dec 19, 2023 12:35 am

Post-COVID, India’s tourism sector has been slowly but steadily limping back to normalcy, the sector’s share in the country’s GDP has increased to 1.77 per cent in 2021-22 from a record low of 1.50 per cent during the pandemic as per information tabled in parliament. As all COVID-induced restrictions have now been lifted, the tourism industry is expected to become healthier in the coming days. Buoyed up by the response from travelers, Tourism ministry has now put stress on ‘sustainable tourism’ to attract more tourists to discover the unique diversity and cultural heritage of India. In its effort, the ministry is promoting existing and new tourist spots to maximise benefits from this sector as the Indian tourism sector has largely been confined to Delhi-Agra-Jaipur circuit for many years, along with a few designated places in the south. Clearly, it is time now to expand the tourism circuit to showcase the real wealth of the nation. The tourism sector should go much beyond regular tourist spots and attach new and exciting destinations.

In this regard, the Northeast may prove to be fruitful if adequate attention is given towards tourism in the region. The region may be devoid of snow-clad peaks, but its tribal culture, wildlife, historic as well as religious places are enough to attract both inland and foreign tourists. The region lacks proper infrastructure like connectivity and accommodation, etc., tackling which may not be a big problem if all stakeholders join hands together. Earlier, negative publicity regarding the region had proven to be an obstacle for the growth of the tourism sector. In a welcome relief, now misconceptions have become a matter of the past and many people are showing interest in visiting the Northeast. But this is just the beginning and there are still miles to go to make the region a favourite tourist destination. Even now, tourist inflow is restricted to parts of Assam and Shillong, while several other enthralling tourist spots remain unvisited in the region. A sincere and combined effort should be made to change the situation by all the states of the region to develop the tourism industry.

On its part, the government of India should also provide proper emphasis towards the region by projecting its uniqueness globally. The Centre should take all necessary steps to solve the connectivity issue by developing major airports in the region as international airports to facilitate the movement of foreign tourists, especially the people from neighbouring countries. Similarly, train and bus routes should be chalked out connecting various tourist spots, so that the visitors can move within the region without any hindrance. At the same time, the number of home stay facilities should be increased considerably to accommodate tourists as building big hotels may create Joshimath-like subsidence due to excessive pressure on land. If such steps are implemented in a time-bound manner, the Northeast will surely become a major tourist hub and attract people from all over the globe.

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By The Editorial Team Updated: Dec 19, 2023 12:35:10 am
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