Full house at 52nd FHRAI Con­ven­tion

The Fed­er­a­tion of Ho­tel and Restau­rant As­so­ci­a­tions of In­dia re­cently con­cluded its an­nual con­ven­tion for the year, where in­dus­try stake­hold­ers con­gre­gated for per­ti­nent and im­pact­ful de­lib­er­a­tions.

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The 52nd FHRAI An­nual Con­ven­tion was held at Shangri-La Ho­tel, Ben­galuru, from Septem­ber 14-16, 2017. At the three­day event, del­e­gates got a chance to at­tend panel dis­cus­sions on rel­e­vant top­ics and were able to net­work with fel­low hote­liers. The theme cho­sen for this year’s con­ven­tion was ‘Hos­pi­tal­ity 2025 – The Fu­ture is Now’. The in­au­gu­ra­tion cer­e­mony was presided over by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar who blessed the func­tion. Ananth Ku­mar, Union Min­is­ter for Chem­i­cals and Fer­til­iz­ers; Ashok Chan­dra Panda, Min­is­ter of State, Depart­ment of Tourism, Gov­ern­ment of Odisha; R.V. Desh­pande, Min­is­ter for Large & Medium In­dus­tries & In­fra­struc­ture De­vel­op­ment, Gov­ern­ment of Kar­nataka, and many other dig­ni­taries were also present at the event. The con­ven­tion had ex­pected 600 del­e­gates but more than a 1000 reg­is­tered.

Speak­ing at the cer­e­mony, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, said, “Hos­pi­tal­ity is in the DNA of In­di­ans just like team­work is in the DNA of the Ja­panese, pre­ci­sion in that of the Ger­mans, eti­quette in the English, and mar­ket­ing in the Amer­i­cans. In­dia is still lag­ging be­hind and needs im­prove­ment in in­fra­struc­ture. We need to have Greece as the bench­mark where tourism is soar­ing. We should host food fes­ti­vals more of­ten. Also, there is a need for more and more ho­tels. We do not nec­es­sar­ily have to ape the Euro­peans, we can set our own stan­dards; an indigenous touch is al­ways wel­come. Apart from this, In­dia needs more col­leges to train young­sters.”

Ad­dress­ing the au­di­ence at the con­ven­tion, Desh­pande said, “Tourism is the high­est em­ploy­ment gen­er­a­tor but In­dia’s big­gest con­cern is still em­ploy­ment as au­toma­tion is tak­ing over the hu­man touch. In­fra­struc­ture has to def­i­nitely be looked at and we are get­ting there. Kar­nataka has the best con­nec­tiv­ity in the en­tire coun­try with some of the best na­tional and dis­trict high­ways. Kar­nataka has al­ways been a vi­sion­ary state. When­ever I travel abroad, I no longer have to ex­plain which part of the coun­try Ben­galuru be­longs to. The city has all kinds of tourism op­por­tu­ni­ties; there isn’t any­thing that it doesn’t have.”

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