Free Press Journal

‘Will bring back India’s safe destination image’


New Delhi: Culture and Tourism Minister Shripad Yesso Naik Tuesday said the issue of safety of women tourists was a priority of his ministry and it will work out a strategy to restore India’s “safe destination” image.

“I am aware of the fact that the tourism industry in India today is concerned about the issue of safety and security of tourists, especially the women travellers. I will like to assure that it is our utmost concern too,” Naik said.

He was speaking at a press conference organised by the Indian Association of Tour Operators (IATO).

“We will soon work out a PR plan and strategy to bring back the image of India as a safe destination. Plans are on to harness technology for growth and development of tourism,” he added.

Naik also emphasised the role tourism plays in generating foreign exchange for the country and the government’s commitment towards improving this sector.

“The government recognises the role tourism and hospitality can play as a foreign exchange earner and their ability to create millions of jobs every year,” he said.

“Tourism is a top priority sector of the government and I am sure I will have the whole-hearted cooperation from the private sector partners to take tourism to new heights. It is now time to scale up our operations in the international market,” he added.

Naik also showed his keenness to make the Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA) visa facility operational at the earliest.

“This will provide a great push to the inbound tourism as we will be able to tap the last minute traveller besides sponsors of business travellers and executives attending conferences,” he said.