ETW STAFF – New Delhi
K Chiranjeevi, union minister of tourism has announced the launch of a new campaign to publicise the tourism potential of the Himalayas and promote this incredible tourist product internationally. To be called ‘777 days of the Indian Himalayas’, the campaign will have a twofold objective, one to attract more international tourists to India during the lean summer season and second, to remind the world that 73 per cent of the Himalayan region is in India.
This decision was taken after a meeting with the office bearers of the Adventure Tour Operators Association of India (ATOAI). The Indian tourism industry has hailed this decision. The Minister pointed out that the aim of this campaign is to promote not only the Himalayan States but also the gateway cities which will serve them with their international and domestic airports and railway stations. He explained that at the time of arrival or departure, the gateway cities will offer an opportunity to the visitors to see the tourism attractions available there.
Chiranjeevi emphasised that it is the time to change the image of India from the one entirely in the plains to one having major attractions in the Himalayas and to change the image from only a winter destination to a summer destination as well. He stated that the ministry plans to launch the campaign on September 27 this year on the occasion of the World Tourism Day. The first major event after the launch will be the Himalayan Run & Trek Event in October, 2013.
The ATOAI members agreed to offer attractive discounts to the tourists during the period of the campaign. The ministry would be holding meetings with the various state governments and other stakeholders including the airlines to offer similar discounts. The ministry is preparing relief maps of the Indian Himalayas in different states in sections which when put together would spread over a width of seven feet. The ATOAI has come forward to organise trekking, river rafting, Himalayan run, mountain and bike events as part of this campaign.