Sunday, January 3, 2010

Tourism in India – Still Some Way to Go!

As Indians, we have always taken pride in our myriad cultures, rich history, lavish ancient structures, colorful festivals and captivating locales. What I am talking about, are the great attractions of this Indian subcontinent which have always drawn tourists from every corner of the globe and has every time made us Indians, proud. If we crawl back a decade or two down the historical lane, we will see that one of the major milestones of tourism in India was planted in the 80’s and then in the 90’s when the National Policy on tourism was laid down followed by the formation of the National Committee on Tourism and then tourism policies like the National Action Plan, National Strategy for Promotion of Tourism were proposed. 

Soon after, the India Tourism Development Corporation was born to promote
tourism in India and to finance the travel projects the Tourism Finance Corporation came into the picture. Since, then a number of organizations have followed one after the other to bring a boost in the tourism sector of India. With all these major efforts, India has pooled in a greater number of foreign as well as domestic travelers and this has made a huge contribution to the flourishing graph of the country’s economy, witnessing a stupendous growth since 2006. With the sketching of a wider spectrum of tourism packages in India, with airfares getting cheaper and the hospitality industry going world class, the scenario of tourism in India has got a lot better. 

Seeing such massive improvements, international organizations like the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the European Travel Commission have come up with interesting stats and graphs and predicted major booms in the coming years for the development of tourism in India. But then again, somewhere down that line, I do feel, there is a big gap in what the tourism industry in India has achieved till date. Frankly, I believe, the treasure pot of Indian tourism deserves much more than what it has at present. This is because, it has still plenty much little and big things to share with the world in terms of its travel delights! 

True, over the years, tourism development in India has traversed several phases and has come a long way since then, but then there still remains much to be done. There are areas which are still much neglected and I strongly feel a careful research on improving upon these areas can boom the tourism business in India many folds and reap sweeter fruits even before the predicted times. One of the major lacking points is the improper infrastructure which entails inadequate air seat capacity, untrained and low manpower, scarcity of suitable accommodation, poor hygienic conditions and inaccessibility to tourist locations. To add to these, poor visitor experience is another area deserving strong attention and here, I must not forget to make a mention of the real unfortunate and embarrassing incidents of tourist harassment, touting and cheating, which have occurred in some places in the recent past.

These apart, there are a few more areas I thought of wisely highlighting, hoping our Ministries of Tourism and related bodies would take notice of these facts and make sincere steps in improving the scenario. Many of you would agree with me that the information on the country and its various travel details available on the sites or books are very limited and most of the times inappropriate or outdated. These extremely useful information which otherwise have the potential of guiding the foreigners effectively, often end up misleading them. Besides, the foreign tourists are mostly interested in the heritage and the cultural tradition of India. Though India is promoted as the world’s most cultural country with an unmatched heritage, very friendly people and tastiest cuisines, hardly has much effort been made, in “practically” holding up these rich traditional facets of India to the world!

Paahun Tour Managers is just a new venture in this big competitive world of tourism in India which has tried to make an honest effort in meeting all that still needs attention. In the process of building this tour company brick by brick, I had to delve deeper into this travel business of my country to which I was revealed these loopholes in our tourism industry that are still quite a few and big ones, demanding immediate fixture. Tourism has always been a very demanding industry since the activities involved are multidimensional. If every wing of the Government body, entailing both the Central and the State levels as well as the private and voluntary organizing bodies partner in this effort, the tasks only get less hard to accomplish and the dream of making our country the best player in the world tourism industry, becomes much easier to achieve.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.