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Gujarat government declares 2006 as 'Tourism Year'

To explore the tourism potential of the State, the government has declared 2006 as the year of tourism.

india Updated: Jan 05, 2006 11:59 IST

Enabling the success of neighbouring Rajasthan, the Government of Gujarat has decided to explore the tourism potential of the State. To start with it has declared 2006 as the year of tourism for Gujarat.

The Chief Minister Narendra Modi announced 2006 as 'Tourism Year' for Gujarat
Where Life is a celebration'. He says that Gujarat is one State where life is celebrated. Everything in the State is a celebration, an occasion so what could be a better theme than this.

"This is for the first time we are planning to add European languages in our tourism site which was earlier restricted to Gujarati, Hindi and English. Slowly we will introduce tourism literature in European languages so that international tourism increases," said Narendra Modi, Chief Minister, Gujarat.

Modi feels that the first priority is to attract tourists to the State. But the bigger challenge remains making them stay. To ensure this it is important to develop the infrastructure and create more entertainment and relaxation zones around the spot. All departments, even Collectorates and other Government offices would contribute to the development of tourism sector.

"We see immense potential for tourism in Gujarat. If you come from Mumbai, you will see two European sites Daman and Diu. You get to see two religious places Dwarka and Somnath. You find Porbandar, handicrafts of Kutch and several other attractive holiday location. Tourists would like to see places connected with Mahatma Gandhi. These days more than 400 people are coming from European countries to visit Gujarat. Why not increase this number by our positive initiatives," says Modi.

The State government has allocated special grants to develop tourist spots and they are also planning to form a tourism council.

The tourism industry in Gujarat helps to create new avenues of employment for several people, including the tribals and people below the poverty line associated with handicrafts industry.

First Published: Jan 05, 2006 11:59 IST