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Sultan Ahmed, Union Minister of State for Tourism releases Approach Paper for Rural Tourism in AP
February 25, 2010

Sultan Ahmed, Union Minister of State for Tourism releases Approach

Paper for Rural Tourism in AP


25 February 2010

TBM Staff, Mumbai:

According to a PIB release, at a two-day National Rural Tourism Workshop in Hyderabad recently, Sultan Ahmed, Union Minister of State for Tourism released the Approach Paper (document which aims to provide preliminary guidelines to enable the States/UTs prepare proposals) for Rural Tourism in Andhra Pradesh. Andhra Pradesh is the first state to have released such a document. Geetha Reddy, Minister of Tourism, Andhra Pradesh was also present on the occasion.

After releasing the Approach Paper, Ahmed said that his Ministry will take initiatives at the Centre to have better inter-ministerial coordination for promotion and marketing of Rural Tourism products both at domestic and international level. The workshop also witnessed presentation of four case studies by rural sites and presentation on use of MIS software. All participants of the workshop had a field visit to Pochampally village, a Rural Tourism site in Andhra Pradesh for on-the-spot study of the site.

Ahmed mentioned that the Rural Tourism Projects initially started in 2003-04 when Ministry of Tourism (MoT) partnered by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) took up this initiative. About 36 rural projects sites in 20 states across India were identified covering skilled diversity of rural artisan communities. Based on the outcomes of the project, MoT engaged another 122 sites, presently totalling 158 rural sites in 28 states.

He opined that state governments should also take up the responsibility of promoting their Rural Tourism products individually as the success of Rural Tourism and its products largely depends on the effective marketing. Establishment of the linkage with the travel industry suppliers viz. tour operators and travel agents is a key step in marketing the Rural Tourism projects. This can be done only by educating the travel trade fraternity on the Rural Tourism products and make them confident in selling it to the consumers.

Devesh Chaturvedi, Additional Director General, MoT added that for visitors, Rural Tourism adds value through programmes in art and craft imparted by skilled local artisans. Village entertainment groups unveil local history and culture.