In what could be a shot in the arm for the reeling tourism industry in the state, Bollywood actor Kangana Ranaut has accepted the Himachal Pradesh government’s offer to become the brand ambassador of her home state.
The National Award winner, who hails from Bhambla village in Mandi district, has conveyed her consent to the government via email.
“We have got an email from Kangana saying she was willing to take on the assignment,” Vijai Singh Mankotia, the vice-chairman of Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Board, told HT.
Like Gujarat benefited from Amitabh Bachchan and West Bengal from Shahrukh Khan, Mankotia said, Kangana would be a great face for promoting Himachal tourism.
The state tourism department had been struggling to find a celebrity to promote the hills for quite some time and had last year decided to rope in Kangana for the assignment.
Last week, the tourism department had sent a detailed plan to the actor, who had sought some general details like the nature of her assignment, the time required, shooting locations, transportation facilities, and the agency hired for shooting the ad films.
“We have sent a detailed plan and also requested her to suggest the agency of her choice for shooting the ads,” Mankotia said, adding that he would be visiting Mumbai soon to meet Kangana for finalising the plan.
Through the brand ambassador, the tourism department is planning to promote the state’s religious tourism, Buddhist circuit, which includes the tribal areas, such as Kinnaur and Chamba, and water bodies under the “Unforgettable Himachal” campaign.
The board had earlier approached playback singer Mohit Chauhan, who hails from Nahan, the district headquarters of Sirmaur district.
During the previous Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) regime, it had approached another Himachal-born actor, Preity Zinta, for the assignment.
Abhishek Bachhan, too, had expressed his willingness for the project, when he was in Shimla for unveiling the 108- foot Lord Hanuman statue at Jakhu temple. However, things could not materialise on all three occasions.