State Tourism Ministers Conference held in New Delhi

New Delhi, 20 Aug (IPR): Hon’ble Minister for Tourism, Industries & Commerce, Shri B.S. Pant, and Additional Chief Secretary, Dr K. Jayakumar, participated in the State Tourism Ministers Conference organised by the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India at Hotel Ashok in New Delhi today.

During the conference, Sikkim showcased and presented to the august delegates the progressive initiatives taken by the State and several best practices adopted to promote tourism and enhance experience of travellers visiting the State. The conference was attended by Tourism Ministers and Secretaries of 20 States.

Union Minister of State for Tourism and Culture, Shri Prahlad Singh Patel, addressed the delegates and emphasised on the need for enhanced levels of coordination across the States and agencies of the States in facilitating travellers and providing them unique and memorable experiences. He stressed on the need for improved and updated information to tourists.

The conference featured the launch of One Stop Portal Solution for tourism related services, presentations on adventure tourism, home stay guidelines and on the status of projects under the Swadesh Darshan and PRASHAD schemes.

In the context of improving quality of services to tourists and travellers offered by homestays/B&B establishments, it was pointed out by the ACS during the conference that it would be necessary to develop a framework for assessment of the quality of services, and certifications, so as to build aspirations in the homestay owners to continuously improve their rating.

Also, it was submitted that the compilation and publishing of a handbook would help guide the homestay owners as to the manner in which the quality of services can be improved, the efforts that need to be undertaken by them, pathways to add or augment the portfolio of services like adding nature trails, ethnic food, entertainment, shopping and avenues for making travellers experience local customs, traditions and lifestyles.

Hon’ble Minister for Tourism highlighted the problems and challenges faced by the State of Sikkim in augmenting tourist facilities in the State especially the need for resources to support the operations and management of the tourist assets and facilities.

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