Published on : Thursday, July 10, 2014
The Indian Minister of State for Culture & Tourism Shri Shripad Yesso Naik has said that travel advisories are issued by various countries from time to time, advising their citizens to avoid travel or to take precautions while travelling to other countries/certain areas in other countries for various reasons. Certain countries including the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and France have advised women tourists to exercise caution while travelling in India, particularly alone and at night.
In a written reply in the Lok Sabha today Shri Naik said, during the year 2013, Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) to India were 6.97 million with a growth of 5.9%, as compared to FTAs of 6.58 million during 2012. FTAs during the months of January to May 2014 were 3.05 million, with a growth of 6.6% compared to 2.86 million FTAs from January to May 2013.
The Minister said, ‘Public Order’ and ‘Police’ are State subjects as per the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution of India. As such, prevention of crime, including crimes against tourists is the primary responsibility of the State Governments/Union Territory Administrations.
He said, in order to ensure safety and security of tourists, including foreign tourists, Ministry of Tourism has advised all the State Governments/Union Territory Administrations to deploy Tourist Police in the States/Union Territories. The State Governments/UT Administrations of Andhra Pradesh, Delhi, Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Punjab, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh have deployed Tourist Police, in one form or the other. The measures taken by the Ministry of Tourism towards safety and security of domestic and foreign tourists including women travellers are :
(1) Grant of Central Financial Assistance to the State Governments of Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh for setting up of Tourist Facilitation and Security Organization (TFSO) on a pilot basis.
(2) Adoption of code of conduct for Safe and Honorable Tourism which contains a set of guidelines to encourage tourism activities to be undertaken with respect to the basic rights like dignity, safety and freedom from exploitation of both tourists and local residents, in particular women and children.