The Andaman and Nicobar Islands are a popular tourist destination in India. This has meant a slew of proposals to expand and intensify tourism, huge investment in infrastructure, improved connectivity and relaxation on Leave Travel Concession (LTC) for domestic tourists. However, these plans are not based on how tourism impacts the Islands. They have failed to take into account aspirations of local communities and whether ground realities support the assumptions made. This Research Report is an analysis of the status of tourism and proposed tourism development plans, an assessment of the social, cultural, economic, environmental, institutional, and policy impacts of tourism. It intends to capture people's perspective on tourism and makes recommendations to ensure sustainable, participatory and equitable approaches to tourism in the Islands.
Tourism development in small islands is a risky proposition due to their exposure to periodical natural disasters. This media report covers the dangers of unregulated tourism development to the Andaman & Nicobar Islands.
The Andaman and Nicobar Islands are seen as tourist havens, even after being ravaged by the tsunami in December 2004. The tourism policy of Andaman and Nicobar Islands 2003 listed its objectives as large-scale resource intensive tourism, opening more islands for tourism, attracting private investment for high-end eco-tourist resorts and obtaining relaxation of the Coastal Regulation Zone (crz). The question however is; can islands like the Andaman and Nicobar Islands affected by tsunami and other natural disasters depend exclusively on tourism? The Commission on Sustainable Development had, in 1996, warned small island states in the Caribbean and Pacific about the perils of over reliance on tourism. Their warnings ring true for the Andaman and Nicobar Islands as well. This media article reflects our concerns with the expansionary tourism plans in Andaman and Nicobar Islands.