National Tourism Policy: The government will bring a comprehensive National Tourism Policy ahead of the upcoming Budget Session of Parliament, Union Minister for Tourism, Culture and Development of the North-East Region (DoNER) G Kishan Reddy said on Sunday.
At a three-day national conference of states’ Tourism Ministers in Dharamshala, Reddy and other ministers discussed ways to promote tourism, development of tourist destinations, attract foreign tourists and increase activities in domestic tourism.
He said that the government aims to promote the tourism infrastructure by strengthening the network of rail, road and air connectivity in the country. The aim is to build 220 airports by 2025.
“We are spending 62,000 crores on railway connectivity, we are spending 80,000 crores on road connectivity. 66 new airports were built in the last eight years and by 2025 our target is to build 220 airports,” he said.
The minister said in two years, the government would give a push for the development of tourism infrastructure in the country under the public private partnership (PPP) mode. The government, he said, would act as a facilitator for the states to attract investment.
Further taking into consideration the steep fall in tourism during the pandemic, the minister said the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee scheme’s timeline has been extended. “To boost the tourism sector during Covid-19 pandemic, the government had announced the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee scheme, whose timeline has been extended till March 31, 2023.”
Reddy further said the government will allocate Rs 50,000-crore under the Additional Credit line Guarantee scheme to the tourism industry, “In a recent cabinet meeting, on the instructions of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, to encourage activities related to tourism, hospitality, and entrepreneurship, 50,000 crores will be allocated to the tourism industry under the Additional Credit line Guarantee scheme,” he said.
Ambedkar Tourist Circuit soon
The government has also announced a Rs 4.5 lakh crore scheme for the Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector. To further promote domestic and international tourism, the government will be starting the Ram temple circuit, the Buddhist circuit, the Himalayan circuit, and the BR Ambedkar tourist circuit.
Special trains would take tourists to famous temples, heritage, and religious places. The government will seek private investment in heritage, adventure, and culture tourism, Reddy further added.