Goa wants visas to be issued in 10 days to up tourist inflow

In an attempt to contain drop in foreign tourist arrivals in Goa due to visa issues, the state government has requested the Centre to ensure that the process to issue visa be cut short from 3 weeks to 10 days.

Last Updated: Nov 10, 2010, 19:25 PM IST

Panaji: In an attempt to contain drop in foreign tourist arrivals in Goa due to visa issues, the state government has requested the Centre to ensure that the process to issue visa be cut short from 3 weeks to 10 days.

The state has written to External Affairs Minister S M Krishna after few of the chartered flights had to delay their landing in Goa due to visa problems.

The Travel and Tourism Association of Goa (TTAG) had
addressed this issue to the state government fearing that it
will hamper the foreign tourist inflow in the coastal state.

"When TTAG approached us on this visa issue, we escalated
the matter to the state Tourism Minister as well as the Chief
Minister immediately," State Tourism Director Swapnil Naik
told PTI over e-mail from London, where he is on an official
visit.

Naik claimed that S M Krishna has promised to review the
situation and possibly reduce the time required for processing
tourist visas from the present three weeks to about a week or
10 days.

"Goa Chief Minister Digambar Kamat has also urged Krishna
to look into the matter urgently, while on a recent visit to
Delhi," he added.

State Tourism Minister Nilkant Halarnkar said the state
is committed towards encouraging tourism and support the
industry in every way.

TTAG was apprehensive after chartered flights from Poland
delayed their arrivals by one and half months. The state lost
around 1500 tourists after seven flights from Poland were
cancelled due to delay in issuing visa.

The operators were supposed to have weekly chartered
flight from first week of November but it was postponed till
December 15.

PTI

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