GUWAHATI: Ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Guwahati, Assam on February 3 and 4, Assam Tourism Minister Jayanta Malla Baruah has said that the Prime Minister will be inaugurating various development projects worth more than Rs 11,000 crore during his visit.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi will arrive in Guwahati on February 3 evening. On February 4, the Prime Minister will lay the foundation stone for various development projects and inaugurate projects worth more than Rs 11,000 crore,” said Baruah on Wednesday.
“PM Modi will also address a mega public rally at Veterinary College Field, Khanapara, in Guwahati on February 4. Today’s Assam cabinet also had a discussion about the Prime Minister’s visit,” he added.
The Assam Tourism Minister also spoke to about the Assam Tourism (Development and Registration) Bill 2024, which was approved by the Assam Cabinet during the assembly session on Wednesday in order to regulate the tourism sector.
“This bill will be introduced in the upcoming budget session of the Assam Legislative Assembly. The state cabinet also gave the administrative approval of Rs 376.11 crore for the construction of a new flyover in Guwahati for which the Assam Chief Minister will lay the foundation stone tomorrow morning. The cabinet also approved the Mising Autonomous Council Amendment Bill 2024, where the number of elected members will be increased from 36 to 40 and the number of nominated members will be increased from 4 to 5,” Jayanta Malla Baruah said.
The Assam Tourism Minister had earlier this month declared that the state government will bring the new Tourism Act in the upcoming state assembly session to develop the tourism sector of the state.
“The state government has taken lots of initiatives to develop the tourism sector of the state and the state has witnessed a massive growth in tourist footfall in the state last year. Our government will bring a new Tourism Act in the upcoming state assembly session,” Jayanta Malla Baruah said.
According to state government data, Assam recorded a total of 83,81,953 domestic tourist footfall and 9,009 foreign tourist footfall in 2022.
Till September 2023, there has been a domestic footfall of 61,85,639 and 15,332 foreign tourist footfall showcasing an increase of 103 per cent and 523 per cent increase in domestic and foreign tourist footfalls respectively during the same period (till September 2023 as against September 2022).
The minister further said that the Tourism Department is working on the formulation of a tourism bill to regulate and facilitate the sustainable development of the tourism industry by encouraging practices that minimise negative impacts on the environment, culture and local communities, ensuring long-term viability as well as tourist safety, enhancing the overall experience of tourists through quality services, infrastructure and attractions, and promoting the cultural heritage of destinations.
“The department plans to celebrate Bihu with fervour and showcase the myriad cultures, traditions and heritage throughout the state. To boost religious tourism and pilgrimage, a proposal for the development and beautification of Navagraha Temple has been submitted to the Government of India. Moreover, developmental activities have already been started at Bhima Shankar Jyotirlinga,” he said.
Adding further, Baruah said, “To protect the Ahom legacy in Sivsagar District, the Rang Ghar Project has been undertaken for the development and beautification of the historical site. Another initiative has been taken up by the Department to construct a corridor at Kamakhya Temple to transform the grandeur of the ‘Shaktipeeth’ and make it accessible for differently abled and aged devotees.”
He also said that a couple of Major MoUs were signed in the year 2023 by the Department of Tourism in Assam to give a boost to the Tourism Infrastructure in Assam. (ANI)