Newdelhi:3/3/23:The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, addressed a Post Budget Webinar on the subject of ‘Developing Tourism in Mission Mode’. It is the seventh of a series of 12 post-budget webinars organized by the government to seek ideas and suggestions for effectively implementing the initiatives announced in the Union Budget 2023.
Addressing the gathering, the Prime Minister remarked that the new India of today is moving forward with a new work culture. He expressed delight at the appreciation shown towards this year’s Budget by the people of India. Reflecting on the previous work culture, the Prime Minister said that something as innovative as the post-budget webinars would not have existed if not for the present government’s spirit of discussions with all the stakeholders before and after the budget. The Prime Minister underlined that the main objective of these webinars is to maximize the output of the budget as well as its timely implementation. “These webinars work as a catalyst in achieving the goals set during the budget”, Shri Modi said. Speaking from the experience of working as the head of the government for more than 20 years, the Prime Minister emphasized that the desired results are achieved within the stipulated time when all stakeholders align themselves with any strategic decisions taken by the government. He expressed happiness at the suggestions received through the post-budget webinars that have been conducted so far.
The Prime Minister underlined the need to think out of the box and plan ahead to take tourism in India to new heights. Throwing light on the parameters before a tourist destination is developed, the Prime Minister listed out the potential of the place, ease of travelling to the destination, and new ways to promote the destination. He further added that emphasizing these parameters helps in preparing a roadmap for the future. The Prime Minister highlighted the huge scope of tourism in the country and listed out coastal tourism, beach tourism, mangrove tourism, Himalayan tourism, adventure tourism, wildlife tourism, eco-tourism, heritage tourism, spiritual tourism, wedding destinations, tourism via conferences and sports tourism. He also gave the example of Ramayan Circuit, Buddha Circuit, Krishna Circuit, Northeast Circuit, Gandhi Circuit, and pilgrimages of all saints, and stressed the need to work together collectively on this. The Prime Minister informed that several places in India have been identified through the route of competitive spirit and challenge in this year’s Budget while also focussing on the holistic development of the destinations. Shri Modi asked for a detailed discussion on how different stakeholders can be engaged.
The Prime Minister busted the myth that tourism is a fancy word associated only with the high-income groups of the country. He noted that yatras have been a part of India’s cultural and social life for centuries and people used to go on pilgrimages even when there were no resources available to them. He gave the example of Char Dham Yatra, Dwadash Jyotirling Yatra, 51 Shaktipeeth Yatra and said that it is used to connect the places of our faith while also strengthening the unity of the country. Observing that the entire economy of many big cities of the country was dependent on these yatras, the Prime Minister lamented the lack of development to enhance facilities suited to the times despite the age-old tradition of yatras. He pointed out that hundreds of years of slavery and the political neglect of these places in the decades after independence were the root cause that inflicted damage to the country. “
The Prime Minister also mentioned the Kankaria lake project in Ahmedabad, Gujarat and informed that skill development for those working in the food stalls was carried out apart from the redevelopment of the lake. He emphasized on cleanliness along with modern infrastructure and informed that about 10,000 people visit the place every day despite the applicable entry fees. “Every tourist destination can also develop its own revenue model”, the Prime Minister said.
“Our villages are becoming centers of tourism”, the Prime Minister remarked as he underlined that remote villages are now coming up on the tourism map due to their improving infrastructure. He informed that the Central Government has started the Vibrant Village Scheme for the villages situated along the border and emphasized the need to support businesses such as homestays, small hotels and restaurants.
The Prime Minister also stressed promoting school and college trips to the northeast so that more people become aware and start developing infrastructure and facilities for tourists. He also emphasized promoting wedding destinations as well as sports destinations. The Prime Minister insisted on developing 50 such tourist destinations that every tourist from around the globe is bound to visit on his trip to India. He also mentioned developing apps for tourist destinations in all languages listed in the United Nations.
Concluding the address, the Prime Minister expressed confidence that this webinar will seriously consider every aspect related to tourism and come up with better solutions. “Tourism has the same potential in the country as agriculture, real estate development, infrastructure and textile”, the Prime Minister concluded.