The world is a book, and those who don’t travel only read one page – St Augustine
Across the globe, tourism has been a major social phenomena among societies. Every time a person travels he/she is part of a global movement that drives inclusive development, promote employment opportunities and help build sustainable societies by conserving heritage, culture and natural resources. Humans generally are curious to visit new places and gain new experiences breaking all barriers with communication and technological advances. Looking at all the positives of tourism, the United Nations started celebrating World Tourism Day every year on 27th September since 1980. In 1997, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) decided to designate a host country each year, while in 2003, it decided to follow a geographic order such as 2006 in Europe, 2007 in South Asia, 2008 in Americas and so on. The theme for this year is ‘1 billion tourists, 1 billion opportunities’ with host being Burkina Faso, a landlocked country in West Africa.
Going by the theme, Fiinovation comprehends that India offers incredible experiences starting from the mighty Himalayas to Backwaters of Kerala. From delectable cuisines of Rajasthan and Bengal to water sports in Goa. From serenity of the North East to world heritage sites such as Taj Mahal in Agra. From the Royal Bengal Tiger in Sundarbans to Asiatic Lions in Gir, India hosts many species that attracts wildlife explorers from across the globe. From Bungee and white water rafting in Rishikesh to Scuba Diving in the Andamans, the nation also stands apart from others in adventure tourism. The Kumbh which is now recognised as better organised than FIFA World Cup is the largest conglomeration of humans on earth. Apart from this, India has also created niche tourism products such as heliport tourism, medical tourism, wellness tourism, adventure tourism and caravan tourism that has increased tourist inflow to several destinations. The government along with United Nations Development Programme is also focusing on developing more than 160 rural tourism destinations across the country.
The Indian tourism industry is the largest service industry in terms of GDP contribution that is expected to reach USD 88.6 billion by 2025. In 2014, the industry contributed Rs 7.64 trillion and 36.7 million jobs to the Indian economy. India also plans to provide visa-on-arrival facility for 150 countries along with e-visa services to promote tourism in the country. The investments in the sector is expected to be Rs 2 trillion in 2015 creating opportunities for infrastructural development and employment. The sector is expected to generate 46 million jobs in India by 2025.
Let us all together join hands to conserve and preserve our heritage and promote incredible destinations of India.
Atithi Devo Bhava!
By- Rahul Choudhury
Media and Communications,