Mysuru: “The State Government’s plans to tap corporate funds in the development of tourist destinations has met good response with seven to eight firms showing interest in adopting the places of tourist interest”, said Tourism Minister R.V. Deshpande here yesterday.
Speaking after flagging off six new buses of Karnataka State Tourism Department Corporation (KSTDC) from the premise of Kote Anjaneyaswamy temple in city, Deshpande claimed that ever since the idea was floated, the Department has received seven to eight proposals from various corporate firms and added that a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) would be signed soon.
The six buses launched by the Minister would offer trips in different packages ranging from one day to five days. While the one and two day packages ferry tourists to the destinations in Mysuru, Mandya and Chamarajanagar, the three-day package would take tourists to Tirupathi, he said and added that the five-day package includes either Coastal regions or destinations in North Karnataka.
Later, taking part in a programme organised at Curzon Park, Deshpande said that despite there being ample opportunities to tap tourism potential in India, the tourism industry contributes only 6.1 percent to the GDP, while in countries, the contribution to the GDP from tourism stood at 18 percent like.
Citing that there were 319 tourist spots in the State, the Minister said that as it was impossible to develop all these sites at one go and added that these sites would be developed in phases.
Cauvery Tourism Development Authority:
Deshpande, while saying that steps are being taken to constitute Cauvery Tourism Development Authority (CTDA) for the development of tourist destinations in south interior Karnataka region also added that Rs. 4.98 Crore apart from Rs. 10 crore sanctioned by the Chief Minister had also been released to take up works at Amba Vilas Palace. He said that there were proposals for an illumination scheme for the Palace and cable-car to Chamundi Hill.
He went on to say that steps were being taken to revive Sound and Light at Srirangapatna which had been put on cold storage and added that waterfalls in the region like Gaganachukki and Bharachukki would also be developed.
The Department has held talks with the Home Department on introduction of ‘Tourist Mitra’ Police Constables at the Police Stations attached to important destinations in the State, he said and added that sentinels will be trained to guide tourists.
MLA M.K. Somashekar, in his presidential address, sought the Minister for creation of an atmosphere in which, those visiting the city during Dasara will be attracted to stay back for two or three days. He also called for conducting cultural programmes on weekends at Kuppanna Park and construction of a glass house at Kuppanna Park on the same lines as the one at Lal Bagh in Bengaluru.
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