CM pitches for Karnataka as an attractive tourist destination

Bengaluru :Pitching Karnataka as an “attractive” tourist destination, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah today said tourist arrivals in the state have grown by more than 300 per cent in the last 10 years to 85 million.

“Karnataka has seen tremendous growth in tourist arrivals, which have grown by more than 300 per cent from a mere 24 million 10 years ago to 85 million today,” Siddaramaiah said.

He was speaking after inaugurating the 38th Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Travel Mart here that was organised by Karnataka government’s tourism department in association with the Union Tourism Ministry.

Apart from being an attractive tourist destination, Karnataka offers a variety of investment opportunities throughout the value chain and across tourism industry verticals spanning both the manufacturing and services sectors, Siddaramaiah said.

“Our aim is to place Karnataka one among the top tourist destinations in the country and also among the top tourist destinations in the world,” he said.

The three-day event will witness an active participation of dignitaries from foreign countries, travel trade members from across the globe, airline partners, hoteliers and corporates.

Speaking at the event, Karnataka Tourism Minister R V Deshpande said 61 countries are participating in the event and 1,100 delegates have registered so far.

This edition of PATA travel mart will for the first time have an investment forum.

Addressing the event, Union Minister of State for Tourism Mahesh Sharma said the Prime Minister’s call for clean India has helped in taking a big step towards keeping our tourist destinations and monuments clean.

He said that 113 out of 150 countries declared have already been included for e-tourist visa on arrivals.

Complementing the central and state governments for hosting the meet, PATA Chairman Kevin Murphy reminded that India had successfully organised two such meets earlier, one in Hyderabad in 2008 and in Delhi in 2011.