New Tourism Pol­icy eyes job cre­ation

The new Tourism Pol­icy will be launched on May 15, 2015. speaks to Dr Lalit Pan­war, Sec­re­tary, Min­istry of Tourism, about the fo­cus points of the pol­icy.

TravTalk - India - - Special Feature - PE­DEN DOMA BHUTIA

Q Na­tional Tourism Pol­icy talks about job cre­ation and tourists’ safety, how are you work­ing to­wards this?

The Prime Min­is­ter has been lay­ing spe­cial em­pha­sis on skills and also on tourism. Our pol­icy will try to at­tempt a syn­ergy be­tween skills and tourism. The thrust will be on how to cre­ate jobs for our youth. Any pol­icy for ex­am­ple, Make In In­dia, is ba­si­cally de­signed for man­u­fac­tur­ing which leads to cre­ation of jobs, so our min­istry’s thrust will be on cre­ation of as many jobs as pos­si­ble for the youths of our coun­try. The Him­mat app of the Delhi po­lice al­ready ex­ists, so when I stress on App it means apps like the Him­mat App, which can be fine-tuned to suit the re­quire­ments of the tourist and take care of their safety and se­cu­rity.

Q What are the other fo­cus points of the Pol­icy?

In­dia is a cul­tural tourist des­ti­na­tion so an­other fo­cus area will be on how to pre­serve the past for our fu­ture. If the past is not good the fu­ture will not be good. We have a com­mon min­is­ter so there will be a syn­ergy be­tween th­ese two units. With­out cul­ture there is no tourism as well.

Q How are you work­ing to­wards for­mu­lat­ing the Na­tional Tourism Pol­icy, 2015?

We had a de­tailed one- day work­shop where all the top brains of the In­dian tourism in­dus­try were there, we had na­tional-level con­sul­ta­tions on tourism. On April 8 we have called all state sec­re­taries of tourism and we’ll also be meet­ing the tourism vet­er­ans of our coun­try for their sug­ges­tions. So, we’ll have 6- 7 rounds of con­sul­ta­tion be­fore we begin work on it.

Q With the Fi­nance Min­is­ter call­ing for evisas for 150 coun­tries, how is the MoT work­ing on it?

We al­ready have 44 coun­tries un­der this scheme and in the last three months 90,000 visas have been is­sued. The re­sponse has been tremen­dous and now we’ll be im­ple­ment­ing it in two phases, we have al­ready pre­pared a list of coun­tries from where we are al­ready get­ting tourists and sent it to the gov­ern­ment. We ex­actly went by the per­cent­age of our source mar­kets, start­ing from the coun­try where we get the max­i­mum tourists and then on. We’ll be send­ing out the list in two phases, the first list has coun­tries which are our top source mar­kets the re­main­ing 50 are coun­tries which are our po­ten­tial mar­kets. The coun­tries for the first phase will be de­clared in the next 2- 3 months, prob­a­bly by end June so that we get good bookings for the next sea­son.

Q With work start­ing on the In­dian Culi­nary In­sti­tute what can we look for­ward to?

The foun­da­tion stone of the In­dian Culi­nary In­sti­tute has been laid by the Tourism Min­is­ter and within two years the con­struc­tion will be com­plete it is be­ing con­structed by Na­tional Build­ing Con­struc­tion Cor­po­ra­tion (NBCC), we’ll of­fer de­gree pro­grammes, post grad­u­ate de­gree, doc­tor­ate pro­grammes, any­thing re­lated to the culi­nary science and art.

Lalit Pan­war Sec­re­tary, MoT

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