Raipur: Tourism is one of the major foreign exchange earners, which apart from currency gains, also helps in important human resource accrual. In line with the far-sighted tourism development outlook of the new government in the centre, Chhattisgarh Tourism Board, under the aegis of Chhattisgarh Government has created a blue-print of future tourism plans that will help establish Chhattisgarh as India’s biggest Eco-Tourism hub.
Chhattisgarh blessed with 80% bio-diversity and a melange of natural abundance tops in natural tourism where 3 national parks, 11 wildlife sanctuaries, 30 plus significant waterfalls, abundant caves & untouched natural topography combine to create the most dynamic and breathtaking tourism experience ever. It is this experience that the Chhattisgarh Tourism Board seeks to promote on an international level via its ambitious future plans.
Ajay Chandrakar, Hon’ble Minister of Tourism and Culture, Govt. of Chhattisgarh says, “Chhattisgarh is a vibrant state which now looks forward towards developing Tourism as one of its richest assets. Based on quality plans and forward looking measures our aim is to take Chhattisgarh Tourism to millions of national and international tourists while grooming the state in welcoming new tourist arrivals. We have already been conferred the National Tourism Award 2012-13 for the publication of best tourism literature, which we seek to make a common achievement every year by creating more tourism oriented schemes. We aim to establish Chhattisgarh as the top tourist destination in the country, and we are confident that our forward looking measures will definitely help us achieve the same.”
Today, the immediate need is to prioritize schemes pertaining to the tourism development and related activities according to the Union Government’s National Tourism Plan. A major focus of the prioritization stands in the promotion of the rich & diverse tribal culture, unexplored tourism circuits and development of local-tourism collaboration, with which major milestones like job creation in tribal sectors and improved status of living can be achieved. Once implemented the go-getting tourism development plans will help in developing the essential eco-tourism in the area, and will enable Chhattisgarh build up as India’s biggest eco-tourism hub, one with probably the biggest potential in South-East Asia.
Mr. Santosh Misra, Managing Director, Chhattisgarh Tourism Board said, “Our aim is to develop Chhattisgarh as India’s biggest eco-tourism hub. Thus enhanced tourism by ways of earmarked tourism plans will enable us to develop tourism in the state in a never-seen-before magnitude. With our future venture, we seek to see greater participation of the local community that will be the most focused tool to counter Naxalism. By strengthening tourism through organised and responsible decisions, our aim is to empower the region and showcase it in a positive light to the world. Our focus will be to increase the tourist footfall from the 1.5 million in 2012 to nearly 3 million by 2015. Also we seek to create vistas of awareness for the international tourists whom we seek to attract with our engaging packages and specially designed tourism junkets.”
Chhattisgarh Tourism Board has received 113.5 crores project prioritization from Ministry of Tourism Government of India. The project aims to achieve the following:
>>Gangrel Dam, the largest water body in Chhattisgarh to be projected as mega destination
>>Promote Sirpur- Kodar-Raipur-Tandula as a mega eco tourist circuit
>>Creation of convention centres, developing niche segments of camping and caravan tourism at important destinations
Development of wayside amenities
Light and Sound shows at 6th century archaeological site of Sirpur and at Bhoramdeo, popularly known as Khajuraho of Chhattisgarh
Focus on Rural tourism and promotion of fairs and festivals
The Chhattisgarh Tourism Board aims to reach out to incoming tourists with an ambitious tourism plan which intends to bring about the overall development of the state tourism. The new tourist model will be focused on the infrastructure of the state that will nurture the fragile eco-system. Chhattisgarh plans substantial eco-tourism circuits that will help the state tourism board in strategic development that will also enable the preservation of the environment. These policies will encourage the participation of local communities in conserving the cultural heritage, while contributing to the wildlife and religious circuits that will be interconnected in order to create a loop of geographical circuits.
About Chhattisgarh Tourism Board
Recognising the importance of Tourism as an instrument for socio- economic development, Chhattisgarh Tourism Board was established on 18th January 2002. As nodal agency the Chhattisgarh Tourism Board is responsible for infrastructural and institutional development, investment in facilities & hotels, wayside amenities and above all aggressive marketing & promotion for the comprehensive development.
The Board intends to promote tourism in a sustainable manner. CTB is also trying to incorporate carrying capacity analysis to the resource utilization. The state is covered with nearly 45% of the forests and 32% of tribal population therefore it offers immense opportunities for Eco-Ethno, Adventure and Cultural tourism.