Cultural Heritage and Tourism




Cultural Heritage and Tourism:

Tourism industry is a continuously developing field. This industry earns the country foreign exchange on a large scale. The number of tourists visiting India and the revenue earned through them is increasing every year. Government is trying to create various facilities for the convenience of tourists visiting India from other countries. The three ministries of Home Affairs, Tourism, and Foreign Affairs together created the facility of e-visa for them, which included e-business visa, e-medical visa, and e-visa. A service giving information on mobile to the tourists not only in Hindi and English but also in ten other foreign languages for 24 hours throughout the week was started. These languages include Arabic, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Russian, and Spanish. This information is made available by the Ministry of Tourism. For this facility, the tourists have to dial 1363. The information covers various topics like cruise tours, adventurous sports tourism, health tourism, facilities for sports like golf and polo, eco-friendly tourism, film festivals, and so on.

The Ministry of Tourism is the nodal agency for the formulation of national policies and programs and for the co-ordination of activities of various Central Government Agencies, State Governments/UTs, and the Private Sector for the development and promotion of tourism in the country. This Ministry is headed by the Union Minister of State for Tourism (Independent Charge).

The administrative head of the Ministry is the Secretary (Tourism). The office of the Director-General of Tourism {now merged with the office of Secretary (Tourism) provides executive directions for the implementation of various policies and programs. Directorate General of Tourism has a field formation of 20 offices within the country and has 8 offices abroad and one sub-ordinate office/project i.e. Indian Institute of Skiing and Mountaineering (IISM)/ Gulmarg Winter Sports Project. The overseas offices are primarily responsible for tourism promotion and marketing in their respective areas and the field offices in India are responsible for providing information service to tourists and to monitor the progress of field projects. The activities of IISM/GWSP have now been revived and various Ski and other courses are being conducted in the J&K valley.

Institutes for systematic training of soft skills, such as proper manners of receiving and helping tourists, communicating with them have been opened. Hotels with amenities and accommodation of premium quality are available to tourists. Institutes offering training courses in ‘Hospitality and Hotel Management’ have been established in many cities in the country.

‘Atulya Bharat’, an advertisement campaign designed to boost tourism, was carried out extensively. To boost tourism to places of unique nature and culture in the northeastern states of India, the travel show entitled ‘GO NORTHEAST’ was released on the Discovery channel. Through the ‘Swadesh Darshan’ program 13 types of pilgrimage tours have been launched. It includes tours to the Himalayas, coastal regions, Buddhist centres, etc.

The information of several uniquely featured tourist places in India, is being publicised through electronic and digital media. Channels like ‘BBC’, ‘Discovery’, ‘History’ are running programmes introducing India’s historical and cultural heritage to the world. It will help to increase the number of tourists coming to India from countries like America, France, Japan, etc. ‘Swadesh Darshan’ or ‘Prasad’ scheme launched by the Ministry of Tourism of the Indian government has chalked out tours to pilgrim centres and spiritual centres in India. There are 95 such places, which are included in this scheme. Trimbakeshwar in Maharashtra is one among them. The Ministry of Tourism, Government of India and Federation of Associations in Indian Tourism and Hospitality (FAITH) organised Indian Tourism Mart- 2018. It was the first event of its kind organised on the model of international Tourism Marts in other countries.

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