Thứ Năm, 29 tháng 5, 2014

India sets out tourist-friendly agenda

More broadly, he has said that “tourism enhances the economic development of

the poor”.

Mr Modi’s government is also to oversee already agreed changes in the visa

system which, from October 1, will enable travellers to pick up visas on


The initiatives – particularly the changes to the visa system – were widely

welcomed this week by India travel specialists. “The new visa rules will

really open up our country to visitors and enable more shorter breaks to the

country,” said Nakul Anand, executive director of the Delhi-based ITC luxury

hotel group. “We’re entering a new era of development in India. I think

there will be a tourism boom.”

Katie Parsons, a spokeswoman for Cox Kings, a long-haul travel specialist

company that began operations in India 256 years ago, described the proposed

changes as a “very positive development” that should make travelling to

India much easier.

Despite its many attractions – from holy cities like Varanasi to the peaks of

the Himalayas, the beaches of Goa and the buzz of cities such as Bombay

(Mumbai) – and the depreciation in recent months of the rupee against the

pound, India lags behind Asian rivals such as China and Singapore when it

comes to attracting tourists.

In addition to the visa complications, travellers have always been deterred by

overall standards of hygiene and cleanliness and the sheer difficulty of

moving around the country.

Of late, there has also been concern over the rise in cases of rape and sexual

molestation of women (including Western visitors), a trend the previous

government had already sought to tackle with the introduction of tough

sentences for offenders.

Additional reporting by Dean Nelson in Delhi

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India sets out tourist-friendly agenda

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