Asserts Centre poised to revive inbound tourism
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday offered a ray of hope to the tourism industry in the state and said that a 100 per cent vaccinated Goa could lead the country in reviving the tourism industry in the country.
Modi, who interacted with Chief Minister Pramod Sawant as well as senior citizens, health workers, among other Goans via video conference, also said that the central government was poised to revive inbound tourism in the country.
“The Central government is taking steps to welcome foreign tourists again. The government has decided to give five lakh tourists free visas. Travel and tourism stakeholders will be given loans up to Rs 10 lakh with a 100 per cent guarantee by the government,” Modi said during the interaction.
“Tourist guides are being given the facility of taking a loan of up to Rs 1 lakh... In the future too, the Central government will be ready to help those who take the tourism sector forward,” the Prime Minister
Linking vaccination to livelihood, Modi said that the two jabs were not just insurance against Covid infection and ill-health
“India’s vaccination drive is not a cover for health, but a cover for livelihood too. It is important that tourism destinations open as soon as possible. The ‘Char Dham’ yatra will begin soon in Uttarakhand.
Goa’s 100 per cent vaccination will become important to revive the tourism sector. If hotel industry workers, taxi drivers, hawkers, shopkeepers are vaccinated, it will give peace of mind to the visiting tourists,” Modi said, while pointing out that Goa was one of the “select group of tourist destinations” with 100 per cent vaccination coverage (first dose).
But Modi also advised against any slackness while dealing with the pandemic. “Domestic and international tourists can take pleasure in coming here... Numbers have come down, but we still cannot take this virus lightly. You will get as many tourists and travellers depending on how much importance you give to safety and hygiene,” the Prime Minister said.