Sikkim to restart tourism: What you need to know

On October 1, the Sikkim government decided to reopen its border with West Bengal for unrestricted vehicle movement and lifted the odd-even road rationing for public vehicles.
People walk past a branch of Axis Bank Ltd on Mahatma Gandhi Road in Gangtok city of Sikkim in this file photo.(Bloomberg Photo)
People walk past a branch of Axis Bank Ltd on Mahatma Gandhi Road in Gangtok city of Sikkim in this file photo.(Bloomberg Photo)
Updated on Oct 10, 2020 06:22 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | Byhindustantimes.com | Edited by Kaleem Ullah Fasihi

The Sikkim government has decided to reopen hotels, homestays and other tourism-related services from Saturday months after the coronavirus pandemic forced a lockdown to curb the spread of Covid-19, officials said. Foreign tourists were banned on March 5 and full restrictions were imposed on the tourism sector on March 17.

On October 1, the Sikkim government decided to reopen its border with West Bengal for unrestricted vehicle movement and lifted the odd-even road rationing for public vehicles. Sikkim had also imposed odd-even road rationing to reduce vehicle movement during the lockdown. The odd-even traffic rationing will continue for private vehicles.

The Himalayan state is ready to host tourists in the state after a seven-month halt due to the pandemic. The department of tourism and civil aviation has issued standard operating procedures (SOPs) regarding the reopening of the tourism sector.

If you are planning to visit the state, here are the guidelines you need to know:

1. In the first phase of the unlock, only domestic tourists and foreign nationals residing in India will be allowed to visit the state.

2. Tourists are advised to carry a valid Covid-19 negative certificate issued 72 hours prior to their arrival.

3. Tourists are required to register on the Sikkim Tourism web portal detailing tour plans and possess a copy of the “travel card” issued by the state authority.

4. Persons above 65 years of age, persons with comorbidities, pregnant women and children below the age of 10 years are advised to either avoid travelling or limit it.

5. Social distancing will have to be followed strictly and tourists are required to wear necessary protective gears.

As of now, Sikkim has recorded 3,279 cases of Covid-19 with 2,640 recoveries and 54 people have lost their lives due to the viral disease.

(With agency inputs)

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Wednesday, December 08, 2021