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18 per cent dip in tourists to Kerala, says Union Minister

Press Trust of India  |  Thiruvananthapuram 

: has been at the receiving end after the floods and lost around 18 per cent of the tourists the state used to receive earlier, of State (independent charge) for said Monday.

He told reporters here that as a and a Keralite, he was not happy with ranking of the state in the sector of the country.

Kannathanam said Prime would on January 15 inaugurate a project related to the here, under the spiritual circuit theme of the swadesh darshan project.

The project of the Centre was to develop the basic facilities in and around the religious institutions across the country.

Swadesh darshan links at least three major tourists destinations of the country.

There are 77 such projects and over Rs 6,300 crore has been sanctioned, he said.

Kannathanam also said 60 per cent of Indian tourists were attracted towards spiritual tourism.

"That's why we are developing the regions around the religious institutions. Under this scheme we have sanctioned 75.88 crore for and over 95 per cent work has been completed," the minister said.

He also said the state was set to receive tourists and the industry was ready after the August deluge.

"I heard that according to preliminary reports, has been receiving 18 per cent less tourists after the floods. This is even as we are ready to receive them after the floods. People outside still think that we are yet to get ready," he said.

The minister also said his ministry was concentrating on attracting tourists from large markets across the globe.

"We are concentrating on capturing the large markets across the globe - like Last year, 144 million people from went out of that country. We got only two lakh of that crowd. We need to re-route at least 10 per cent of Chinese tourists to our country in the next few years," he said.

Kannathanam rubbished the earlier claim of state ministers that only Rs 18 crore was sacntioned by the Centre for the development of Sabarimala and said the rest would be given only after receiving the utilisation report of the first installment.

"The first installment of around Rs 18 crore was given and the next installment would be alloted when the government submits the utilisation report and receipt for the first installment," he said.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, January 14 2019. 19:45 IST