New Delhi, 1 February 2020 – Presenting the first Union Budget of the third decade of 21st century, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman unveiled a series of far-reaching reforms, aimed at energizing the Indian economy through a combination of short-term, medium-term, and long-term measures. Here are the announcements for culture and tourism:
- Allocation of Rs. 2500 crore for 2020-21 for tourism promotion.
- Rs.3150 crore proposed for Ministry of Culture for 2020-21.
- An Indian Institute of Heritage and Conservation under Ministry of Culture proposed; with the status of a deemed University.
- 5 archaeological sites to be developed as iconic sites with on-site Museums:
o Rakhigarhi (Haryana)
o Hastinapur (Uttar Pradesh)
o Shivsagar (Assam)
o Dholavira (Gujarat)
o Adichanallur (Tamil Nadu)
- Re-curation of the Indian Museum in Kolkata, announced by Prime Minister in January 2020.
- Museum on Numismatics and Trade to be located in the historic Old Mint building in Kolkata.
- 4 more museums from across the country to be taken up for renovation and re-curation.
- Support for setting up of a Tribal Museum in Ranchi (Jharkhand).
- Maritime museum to be set up at Lothal- the Harrapan age maritime site near Ahmedabad, by Ministry of Shipping.
- State governments expected to develop a roadmap for certain identified destinations and formulate financial plans during 2021 against which specified grants to be made available to the States in 2020-21.
“Budget has given the Indian hospitality sector the requisite boost by its initiative of developing museums in five archaeological sites. This would aid in creating the much needed social infrastructure around these locations and boost employment opportunities as well. New properties and resorts will come up in these locations and cater to these travelers.
Also, the allocation of Rs 2,500 crore for tourism promotion in this fiscal would abet in attracting domestic and international travelers to various locations in India. These initiatives would surely give the much-needed push to the Indian Hospitality & Tourism sector,” said Preety Arora, Head Business Strategy, Amatra Hotels & Resorts.
Indroneel Dutt, CFO, Cleartrip added, “The government has backed its vision to turn India into one of the world’s top tourism hubs by allocating INR 2,500 crore for promoting tourism in general and setting aside a sum of INR 3100 crore for the Culture Ministry to boost regional tourism. What would be wonderful is to have an empowered nodal body comprising of the Govt / OTA / airline, hotel and other industry representatives with the objective of promoting discoverability, ease of booking and fulfillment of our cultural, natural and heritage sites. Introduction of more Tejas Express type trains and the inauguration of several culturally-significant archaeological sites are other much-needed moves. We also welcome the Hon’ble FM’s proposal to develop 100 more airports as well as the doubling of the airline fleet by 2024. This calls for skilled manpower development in parallel. The aim to double the fleet to 1200 in the next 3 years will certainly accelerate the passenger growth rate.”