An exclusive sneak peek into Hindustan Times E-Tourism Conclave
The e-conclave will be held between September 24-25, and will focus on the theme: Indian Tourism – Road to Recovery ‘Refocus, Reboot, Revive’.Updated: Sep 22, 2020, 22:25 IST
Hindustan Times E-Tourism Conclave, a two-day webinar on the road ahead for travel and tourism in India, is set to showcase the country’s leading efforts in reviving its most beloved sector.This year, not unlike last year, the conclave will have a stellar line-up of industry leaders, policymakers and stakeholders voice their concerns and find solutions. The e-conclave will be held between September 24-25, and will focus on the theme: Indian Tourism – Road to Recovery ‘Refocus, Reboot, Revive’. There will be a total of eight sessions spread over two days.
Giving a sneak peek into what the e-conclave has in store, some of the panelists share their views.
Vikram Kapur, Additional Chief Secretary, Government of Tamil Nadu, says, “Certain concessions in terms of waivers, deferment of taxes be provided, given that State governments have limited fiscal space. Even though hotels have opened, there is no footfall – the leisure sector is not on the list of priority for the consumer. People have lost jobs, there have been cuts in salaries, so when disposable household income is limited, it will definitely not be a priority to spend on travel and hospitality.” Exploring viable solutions, he mulls, “We need to see how we can kick-start this demand. Marketing can only help to an extent, but then you also need funding. Perhaps the Central government can look at ways to fund the States to offer discounts and subsidies on travel. LTC scheme is there for government employees and even the private sector has leave concessions, which is a way of putting money in the pockets of the consumer to help them travel. Incentives and discounts on travel fare, hotel rooms etc. will help boost the demand. I think it is only a matter of time before people develop that confidence.”
TP Rajesh, MD and Commissioner of Tourism, Government of Tamil Nadu, says, “We will now try to focus on domestic tourism. Barring hill stations, hotels have opened, but we still haven’t reached normalcy.” Highlighting the importance of an event of this nature, he explains, “One side of it is the tourists, others being the stakeholders. We want to know what is in the mind of the stakeholders so that when we develop policies or initiatives, we will know their ideas. It provides one common platform for the aggregation of ideas. Tamil Nadu has some great stories to tell; we have identified 290 new tourism sites. We want to put it on a professional platform and leverage those strengths.”
Films have always been at the intersection of demographics, continuously opening up new destinations. Be it the hidden gems of the heartland, or the more popular hill and seaside locations, films always fascinate with their geographical cinemascape. Effortlessly, they become symbiotic partners in this cycle of economic growth, too. Filmmaker Kunal Kohli, says, “There is an urgent to kick-start both these industries. A film shoot by its very nature has a whole lot of people working on it. With the advent of OTT, so much more content is being produced. India stories are very much in demand and people want to see different parts of the country for the content they are craving for. It means locations, and if every State can provide infrastructure and support to the crew, then we can work together and shoot all over the country. We will be using a lot of local resources - drivers, cooks, location managers, local actors and accommodation. It will be a revival for their business as well as our business. The film and the tourism industry need to work together and collaborate to find ways to generate employment for both industries.”
The event is in partnership with Bihar Tourism, Chhattisgarh Tourism, Delhi Tourism, Gujarat Tourism, IRCTC, Tamil Nadu Tourism. Airline partner: Spicejet. Experiential holidays partner: Club Mahindra.
Catch all the action live on September 24 and 25, 11am onwards on Hindustan Times’ Facebook Page.
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