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Uttar Pradesh hopes to find place in Centre’s 10 iconic destinations

Small wonder in the union budget 2018, union finance minister Arun Jaitley announced to develop 10 prominent tourist sites into iconic tourism destinations.

lucknow Updated: Feb 02, 2018 13:55 IST
Pawan Dixit
Pawan Dixit
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
Uttar Pradesh,Tourism sector,Central government
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s constituency Varanasi, Ayodhya and Mathura may be the cities from where three iconic sites could figure in the Centre’s list.(HT)

Ever since it came to power in 2014, the Modi government’s thrust has been on tourism.

Small wonder in the union budget 2018, union finance minister Arun Jaitley announced to develop 10 prominent tourist sites into iconic tourism destinations.

The Yogi government in Uttar Pradesh is hopeful that at least three of these sites will be from the state.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s constituency Varanasi, Ayodhya and Mathura may be the cities from where three iconic sites could figure in the Centre’s list.

The unbroken chain of 84 majestic ghats of Kashi may also make it to the list.

The Centre has decided to adopt a holistic approach in promoting these tourist destinations: skill development, development of technology, attracting private investment, branding and marketing.

Apart from this, in this budget, the Centre has also decided to upgrade 100 ‘adarsh’ monuments of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI).

These monuments are specially designated heritage sites under the ASI, where emphasis is laid on sanitation and enhanced facilities for visitors.

The Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY) programme has been taken up to revitalise heritage cities.

BJP FOCUS ON AYODHYA

Ayodhya has become the focal point after the BJP came to power in the state in the last assembly polls.

The Centre has already announced projects worth Rs 133 crore for Ayodhya as part of developing the town as major tourist destination.

The Yogi Adityanath government will not only develop ghats of Ayodhya but also add necessary amenities which this town desperately needs.

The Ram Katha gallery and Park, Ram Ki Paidi and Lakshman Kila ghat, all figure in Ayodhya’s transformation.

Apart from these historic and religious places, the state government has also laid out an elaborate plan aptly titled ‘Ayodhya street rejuvenation – Main Road and footpath.”

Under this, the government will spend Rs 8 crore on eight development activities, including landscape at public places, public toilets, drainage, street lights, sign boards and sandstone benches, among others.

Ayodhya lacks a permanent bus stand. Till date the town has a makeshift bus stand and its location keeps on changing according to requirement.

The temple town will now have a permanent bus stand near Saket Petrol pump and a parking lot for vehicles. For both the facilities, Rs 22 crore has been earmarked.

The government has also proposed a multipurpose hall at Digambar Akhara and a tourist shelter at Panchkoshi Parikrama.

The government has also decided to spend Rs 12 crore on the beautification of the majestic Ram Ki Paidi on the bank of river Saryu. It would get a facelift with facade illuminator, ghat renovation, stone railing, signage, solar lights, public convenience, drinking water kiosks and parking.

It would also have stone benches, stone planters, gazebos and stone bollard.

First Published: Feb 02, 2018 13:55 IST