The department of tourism, Government of Arunachal Pradesh recently hosted its first Andhra Pradesh Conclave at The Leela Palace Hotel in New Delhi. The conclave was part of the state government’s efforts to boost domestic and international tourism flow to the state which could only attract 3.5 lakh tourists in 2016. Speaking at the event, Kiren Rijiju, union minister of state for home affairs, highlighted the state’s tourism potential, unveiling some of the sectors that are in need of investments. He stated, “It is sad to say, but Arunachal Pradesh lacks the basic infrastructure like hotels and developed roads to manage large number of tourist arrivals. In the past, tourism numbers have been increasing, but the volume is not encouraging for our work. The government is already working towards infrastructural growth to attract domestic and foreign tourist arrivals.”
Commenting on the state’s efforts in increasing connectivity routes, Dr Joram Beda, tourism secretary, Government of Arunachal Pradesh, informed, “The state has eight major landing ports, under the Ministry of Defence, out of which three have been approved for dual use namely Ziro, Pasighat and Mechuka. We will start daily helicopter services from Guwahati to Itanagar to offer more connectivity services for the travellers’ convenience. The government has already started work on maintaining roads and highways to connect major tourist destinations. We plan to make Arunachal Pradesh a premium travel destination like Bhutan.”
The board has also been organising theme based events such Ziro Festival of music, Tawang Festival, Arunachal Spring Carnival, Mechuka Adventure Festival and other activities to promote the culture and adventure offerings of the state. Beda mentioned, “Arunchal Pradesh has a lot to offer in eco tourism spots and adventure travel, but there are only 25 active tour operators out of the 250 registered ones. I will request all the stakeholders to come forward and invest in the state and take this destination to more tourists.”
The event also witnessed signing of four MoUs among various stakeholders and Government of Arunachal Pradesh. Oxigen Wallet has signed as the official e-wallet partner, MakeMyTrip.com has signed as its official online travel portal, Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI) joined as the official travel agents association partner, Fly Wings (FWSTC) signed as the official partner for hospitality training and The National Film Development Corporation of India (NFDC) signed as the official creative and brand development partner to the department of tourism.