The President of India Shri Ram Nath Kovind presented the “National Tourism Awards, 2015-16” to various segments of the travel, tourism and hospitality industry at a function organised by the Ministry of Tourism on the occasion of “World Tourism Day”.
The President launched the “Incredible India 2.0 Campaign”; ‘Adopt A Heritage’ Project and new Incredible India Website on the occasion. “Incredible India 2.0 Campaign” marks a shift from the present generic promotions being undertaken across the world, to market specific promotional plans and product specific creatives, with greater focus on digital presence and social media. ‘Adopt A Heritage’ Project plans to entrust heritage sites to the public sector and private sector companies and individuals for the development of tourist amenities. They will become ‘Monument Mitras’ and adopt bthe sites. The “New Incredible India Website” is an advanced version of the website with more useful features.
Speaking on the occasion, the President said that tourism is one of the largest industries in the world. Its evolution can be estimated from the fact that the number of tourists all over the world has increased from 2.5 crore in 1950 to 123 crore in 2016. The tourism industry contributes 10.2 percent of the world’s GDP. It is estimated that every 10th person in the world works in the tourism industry. In India too, the livelihood of a very large number of people is linked to the tourism industry. In the year 2016, tourism’s contribution to GDP was 9.6 percent and 9.3 percent to total employment. The tourism industry can contribute significantly in generating permanent employment opportunities and eliminating poverty. According to an assessment, an investment of Rs. 10 lakh in tourism industry provides employment to about 90 people, while about 45 in agriculture, and about 13 people in manufacturing. Inclusive tourism development can strengthen inclusive economic development. Every citizen should strive to provide a good experience to tourists at his or her own level. In a tourism conscious society, the role of the government is only to provide direction and a facilitating environment.