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HindustanTimes Sat,19 Apr 2014

Documentary on MP heritage to be telecast on National Geographic

Neeraj Santoshi, Hindustan Times  Bhopal, December 26, 2012
First Published: 10:19 IST(26/12/2012) | Last Updated: 10:26 IST(26/12/2012)

To increase Madhya Pradesh's visibility at the global level, a documentary on MP's heritage, wildlife and historical legacy would be telecast on National Geographic channel on December 29 and 30 and on Fox Traveller channel on December 30.

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Earlier this year the MP government had commissioned National Geographic channel to make a documentary on the state's heritage, wildlife and historical legacy and highlight the strengths of MP's unique heritage at the international level.

It is for the first time that the state government has commissioned the National Geographic channel to make a film on the state with the objective to attract foreign tourists to the state. The 21-minute documentary has cost the state around Rs. 35 lakh, claim the officials in Madhya Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation Ltd (MPTDC).

MPTDC chief general manager (marketing operations) OV Choudhary told HT that the National Geographic team completed shooting in MP over three months ago. "Their crew was here for nearly two months. The budget for the film was around Rs. 35 lakh, which involves production cost, transmission cost and cost of promos. The documentary would be shown on National Geographic channel thrice," he said, adding that the promos of the documentary have also started coming up on these two channels-National Geographic and Fox Traveller.

The MPTDC officials maintained that the copy right of the documentary would remain with the Madhya Pradesh government and it will be used at various forums to showcase the state's strengths that include a very rich wildlife, heritage structures, religious shrines, prehistoric sites, fossil sites and so on.

The commissioning of the film is part of state government's efforts to attract tourists to the state, especially at the global level. Despite having immense tourism potential, Madhya Pradesh has not been able to develop its tourism product like Rajasthan and Kerala, which don't have that much variety when compared to MP

If foreign tourists visiting Khajuraho and Orchha are taken out of picture, there are comparatively few foreign tourists visiting MP. The main reason for this is poor connectivity, especially air connectivity, which is preferred by foreign tourists and comparatively less publicity budget. For increasing the influx of tourists, however now MP government is going for aggressive marketing, encouraging private investment, good publicity, infrastructure development and retention of tourists. The annual publicity budget has also been increased to some extent. For the first time the state government has also started giving ads in the reputed international tourist journals like Travel and Leisure, Wedding Affairs and so on.

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