When Salman Khan, the brand ambassador, used to showcase Madhya Pradesh state tourism and the catchy taglines... Hindustan ka Dil Dekho and Sau tarah ke rang used to reverberate... the 'Dabangg' state bloomed in a kaleidoscope of sculptures. But now we are nursing the heavy losses inflicted by the onslaught of the corona virus.
Along with MP Tourism department, the Directorate of Archaeology, Archives & Museums department have virtually been "locked". The coffers of these departments have not jingled with a penny and the scene has not been worse.
S Tiwari, Tourist officer, MP Tourism department said, "As per the records maintained every year, the month of February (ending), March, April and May are crucial months because of huge footfall".
"The MP Tourism department in Indore earns around Rs 15 lakh in March and Rs 12 lakh in April on an average".
Sources from MP Tourism department, Bhopal office, said the total earning of the entire state in March and April stands between Rs 20 to Rs 22 crore. Every year, the department generates revenue up to Rs 140 crore on an average.
Source said, "It will nearly take six months for the department to recover the losses. The aftermath of the virus attack has been so intense that,international tourists may not be allowed to come for at least a year and domestic tourists will avoid visiting public places due to corona terror".
MP Tourism department officials said due to lockdown, the department targets have gone haywire.
Department of Archaeology, Archives & Museums
The Department of Archaeology, Archives & Museums are also witnessing the same "holocaust". The department director (Indore Zone), Shobharam Verma, said, "It's obvious that due to lockdown, we will bear extreme loss in lakh of rupees. It will probably take months to recover".
According to the records of tourist visits and revenue generated last year, provided by the department sources...
* Around 7912 tourists visited Lalbagh Palace in March from which revenue of around Rs 95,920 is generated.
* Similarly in April, 4260 tourists visited with revenue of Rs 49,500.
* In May, 6165 tourists visited which generated a revenue of Rs 66,450.
* In all the three months, around 18,283 tourists visited with revenue of Rs 2,11,870.
Along with Lalbagh Palace, tourists also visited Indore Central Museum. In all of the three months around 4792 tourists visited which generated revenue of Rs 1,01,240.
*Total revenue of Rs 3,13,110 is collected from both the monuments.
*Department sources said Rajwada is also another source of big revenue for the department but it is been under construction for the last two years due to which the department has already facing loss. "The lockdown delayed the construction work of Rajwada due to which department will might have to bear burden further.