Published on : Wednesday, September 23, 2015
The National tourism award 2013 -14 was held in New Delhi at the Vigyan Bhavan. Many states throughout India were recognised for their contribution in tourism and were awarded for their outstanding feat.
There were12 categories selected by the Tourism ministry for The National Tourism Awards which including Comprehensive Development of Tourism, Best Rural Tourism Project, Best Heritage City, Best Hotels, Awards to Inbound Tour Operators and Travel Agents for their outstanding work, awards in the field of publicity/promotion and overseas marketing, use of information technology for tourism among others.
The state of Madhya Pradesh received awards in six categories. The State won an award as the Best State /Union Territory -Comprehensive Development of Tourism, Civic Management of a Tourist Destination in India, Best maintained and Disabled Friendly Monument, Tourist Friendly Railway Station, Best Heritage City, in the Niche Tourism category the state won the award for the most Innovative Unique Tourism.
The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee gave away the awards. Speaking on the occasion, the President congratulated the award winners and said that these exceptional individuals and institutions who have been felicitated have distinguished themselves through their dedication in promoting India as a tourist destination. He said that broader social contacts between tourists and receiving communities go a long way in enhancing mutual understanding, tolerance, and awareness between peoples. India offers one of the best tourism experiences in the world, he added.
Highlighting the contribution of tourism to the economy, the Union Minister of State for Tourism (Independent Charge), Culture (Independent Charge), Civil Aviation, Dr. Mahesh Sharma said that the country earned Rs1,23,000 Crore rupees of foreign exchange through tourism last year . It contributes 6.8% to the GDP. Tourism, he said is an ‘Industry of Smiles’ and the Government gives top priority to Swachhta, Suraksha and hospitality as the 3 pillars of tourism promotion in the country. Highlighting the recent steps taken by the Government, Dr. Mahesh Sharma said that Welcome Booklet is being distributed at the International Airports, giving important information including DOs and Don’t’s to the foreign travellers. Similarly, 24X7 helpline has been set up which is currently functional in Hindi and English and will soon be functional in 12 International languages.
Similarly, started in November last year, e-Tourist Visa facility has been extended to 113 countries in such a short span of time. Dr. Mahesh Sharma said that the achievements made by the tourism industry could not have been possible without the contribution of the private stakeholders. The work done by the stakeholders has not only generated revenue but also given employment and contributed to women empowerment.
Among the important recipients of awards include the state of Gujarat and Kerala. M/s Kuoni Travel India Pvt. Ltd, Gurgaon received the first prize for Best Inbound Tour Operators/Travel agents in the category of earning Foreign Exchange.
Tags: madhya pradesh, National tourism awards 2013 -14