IMPHAL Sept 12: Commissioner of Tourism, Government of Manipur, KK Chhetry has stated that many Southeast Asian countries have expressed their willingness to come to the state for the upcoming Sangai Festival to be held in December this year.
The commissioner stated this while addressing a press conference today at Hotel Imphal.
He further stated that Manipur Tourism has achieved many awards from national and international organizations on travel and tourism. The state has so far bagged an international award at Tourism and Travel Fair 2011 organized by Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) held in New Delhi and a national award at Tourism Fair held in Mumbai.
Manipur team was led by KK Chhetry and comprised of Dr. L. Surjit, president MMTA, HRK Sharma, Managing Director of Seven Sisters Travels, Santosh Shekhar, manager of Shija Hospitals and Research Institute, Sommykanta Paonam, Manager of the Classic Hotel and L. Ibochoubi, Tourist officer Manipur Tourism. Chhetry stated unlike the previous years many domestic and foreign festive tourists are expecting to turn up this year.
He asserted that the Protected Area Permit which has been lifted since the last many months in the state needs to be further extended for another year from its expiry period on December 31 adding extension of the PAP in the state will invite more domestic and foreign tourists in the state.
As for accommodation of such tourists no high end lodging will be required because in adventure, eco and village tourism the only factor is to streamline the villages, etc. Citing government’s initiatives, He asserted that prior to the beginning of the festival the PAP will be extended.
For such outdoor tourism, camping or tenting will be the norm. He added that sufficient inputs on technical know how on the relevant fields to the appropriate villagers will be facilitated in order to develop full blown travel destinations to various villages. Currently, they have earmarked some villages in Churachandpur and in Senapati for the said project as eco and village tourism destinations.
Chhetry said that PAP is warding off potential tourists from the state. So far the state has no reports of untoward incidences on tourist unlike the frequent crimes perpetrated to tourists in other state of the country.