How many tourists visit Goa? Tourism Minister Dilip Parulekar has no answer
Even as state Tourism Minister Dilip Parulekar claimed that 90 percent of the passengers arriving on Goa's Dabolim airport are tourists, legislators from both ruling and opposition parties benches cornered him for not being able to furnish adequate visitors' data from AAI.
Panaji: Even as state Tourism Minister Dilip Parulekar claimed that 90 percent of the passengers arriving on Goa's Dabolim airport are tourists, legislators from both ruling and opposition parties benches cornered him for not being able to furnish adequate visitors' data from AAI.
Former state Tourism Minister and current Goa Vikas Party legislator Fransisco Miccky Pacheco raising the issue on the floor of the House in the ongoing session questioned the credibility of the figures provided by Parulekar about the passengers arriving at state's lone airport.
Pacheco put questions on the issue number of tourists arriving in the state through the airport.
The minister, however, could not give the details and only stated that "almost 90 percent of the passengers arriving at the airport are tourists," before snapping at Pacheco saying that "you should have asked the specific question if you wanted the answer".
To this, Pro-tem Speaker Mauvin Godinho, who was chairing the session, told the minister that since Goa is a tourist state, he should have had a detailed answer for the question asked by the member.
"You should have had the information. Pull up your department for not providing proper data," he said.
Leader of Opposition Pratapsingh Rane, who participated in the discussion, questioned how many e-visas were issued at Goa airport, for which too, the minister could not reply.
"The minister is a very incompetent person. You don't know anything," Rane said on the floor of the House.
During the Question Hour, Parulekar said the Tourism Ministry has been holding regular meetings with the Airports Authority of India (AAI), the Civil Aviation Ministry and the Defence Ministry over the airport.
As per the reply tabled on the floor of the House, between April 2014 and March 2015 45,14,278 passengers, and between April-November 2015, another 31,20,652 passengers used the airport.