Minister plans to better tourism facilities to generate more revenue

Minister for Tourism, Culture and Youth Advancement M. Srinivasa Rao, popularly known as Avanthi Srinivas, has said that the State government will tap the tourism potential of the State and make the sector a major source of income by streamlining the existing system.

Mr. Srinivas along with local MLA and Endowments Minister Vellampalli Srinivasa Rao went round the Bhavani Island in the city on Sunday as part of the former’s study of tourist destinations in the State.

Later, addressing a press conference, Mr. Srinivas said that the State had a variety of tourist destinations and opportunities for temple tourism at Tirupati, river tourism in Rajahmundry and Vijayawada, sea tourism at Visakhapatnam and mountain tourism in Araku and Paderu besides the various options offered by the coastline in the State, among the longest in the country.

He said tourism had been a major source of income in many countries and efforts would be made in the State to increase tourist footfall and revenue through it.

PPP model

“Firms interested in establishing infrastructure under the public-private partnership model will be encouraged and put through the single window system for transparent and quick processing,” Mr. Srinivas said. There were plans to organise at least one State-level activity every month. Mr. Srinivas said the department would focus on publicising its assets to draw international and local tourists besides improving the facilities and hospitality that would make tourists feel safe and secure at the tourist spots.

He said that the government was making arrangements to have visa on arrival facility at Vijayawada, Visakhapatnam and Tirupati airports to encourage international tourists.

Mr. Srinivas said that Bhavani Island was one of the important destinations in the State and would be overhauled in a year with proper amenities, improved greenery and gardens. He asked officials to make proposals for the construction of a fabricated structure for a convention hall with a capacity of 500 persons so that events could be organised. He directed officials to increase security measures and promised to have a police post with a sub-inspector on the island to ward off miscreants and make it safe for families.

Mr. Srinivas also promised to probe all the allegations of corruption in the department in line with the Chief Minister’s decisions.

Responding to a query, Mr. Srinivas said that the necessity of consultants in the department who were being paid lakhs of rupees would be reviewed. All the requirements would be put forth before the Chief Minister in a review meeting soon.

Mr. Vellampalli Srinivasa Rao said that the island needed more rooms and amusement rides for children.

MLAs Malladi Vishnu and Jogi Ramesh alleged misappropriation of funds by the previous government in the name of events.

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