Chief Minister says `tourism` is doorway to economic development of state

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IMPHAL, November 21: “Manipur is one of the most beautiful place filled with God gifted nature, however due to the present law and order situation of the state and the lack of infrastructure and development the state is unable to move forward”, stated Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh while formally inaugurating the ten-days long Manipur Sangai festival, 2011 today.

The formal inaugural function of the festival was held at the Bheigachandra Open Air Theatre this evening.

Tourism minister TN Haokip was the president of the inaugural function.

The function was also attended by Member of Parliament T Meinya, IFCD minister, N Biren, chairman PDA Kh Loken, in-charge of border trade department of foreign trade, Thailand, Tharado Thongran and other state officials attended as the guests of honour.

Further speaking at the inauguration, the Chief Minister observed that Manipur is known as the ‘Land of Jewel’ and the state has huge potential in tourism.

He further added that the Manipur State Tourism festival is the most important fair in the state, as it is very much evident that tourism can help bring development to the state.

He further elaborated that to bring economic development to the state, tourism should be developed first and for doing so we should attract tourist into the state by showcasing the various arts and culture; indigenous sports; ethnic cultures of the state.

Citing that tourism can never developed in the state without the inflow of tourist into the state, the Chief Minister further appealed to the people of the state to show good hospitality and to welcome the tourist warmly.

Further elaborating on the Protected Area Permit, he stated that the permit has been lifted as there has been a light improvement in the present law and order situation of the state.

The entry of major industries and companies into the state will take some more time informed the state Chief Minister; hinting that the law and order situation is still not up to the mark.

Tourism minister TN Haokip stated that Manipur should look up to Thailand as the country has been showing a great interest in the state and added that Thailand has been sending its delegates in every state tourism festival.

He further seconded the state Chief Minister and said the festival will showcase the beauties of the state including the talents in sports, culture and tradition to the outside world and help in turning the state into a tourist hotspot.

He also appealed to the people to show their greatest hospitality to the visiting tourist.

Meanwhile, tourism commissioner and media co-ordinator of the festival stated in his speech that there are more than 300 stalls in the Sangai festival, 2011 including stalls from Thailand, Myanmar. Various presentations showcasing the dances and martial arts of the state were also part of the inaugural function.

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