Tourism ministry planning to revamp Swadesh Darshan scheme, have moved cabinet for the same: Prahlad Patel


The tourism ministry is planning to revamp its Swadesh Darshan scheme, its scheme for integrated development of theme based tourist circuits in the country and has moved cabinet for the same, tourism ministry csaid on Thursday.

“A social audit has been conducted in the Swadesh Darshan scheme and there is a lot of room for changes. We have moved the cabinet for the same. We have discussed whether we should work on select circuits or one circuit at a time or should include circuits on all states at the same time. The Prasad scheme has yielded good results,” the minister said.

Around 79 projects have been sanctioned under the Swadesh Darshan scheme since its launch in 2014-15 as per the ministry’s website and the total amount sanctioned is around Rs 6,000 crore.

The minister said the tourism ministry is looking at efforts like setting up baby care and feeding rooms at all iconic sites following the launch of such facilities at the Taj Mahal in August this year.

“Some big steps have been taken to boost tourism in the past 100 days like the GST tax cuts on hotel tariffs, the e visa duration getting increased and a reduction of the e visa fee, the home ministry opening up 137 peaks for tourists including the Siachen peak. These steps have helped boost numbers,” Patel said.

On the occasion of 100th year of Jalianwalla Bagh incident, Patel handed over the ‘kalash’ containing the ‘holy soil’ of Jalianwalla Bagh in Amritsar to prime minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi on Thursday, the tourism ministry said in a statement.

Patel said the ‘kalash’ will be placed in the National Museum, New Delhi and will be displayed there for general public.

Patel also said that the ministry of culture is setting up sign boards in foreign languages to facilitate foreign tourists in some important Indian monuments. He said the ministry is providing this facility to those top three countries, from where more than 1 lakh tourists are coming to visit such sites. He further said that such facilities will be set up in Madhya Pradesh where Buddhist pilgrims come to visit from different countries especially from Sri Lanka and South Korea.