ITANAGAR, 22 Mar: Chief Minister Pema Khandu on Monday launched ‘Dekho Apna Pradesh’ – an initiative of the chief minister himself, conceptualized on the lines of the union tourism ministry’s ‘Dekho Apna Desh’ initiative, to restart tourism activities and encourage citizens to take a pledge to visit at least 10 places in Arunachal by 2022.
Homestay operators, media persons, tour operators, vloggers and officials attended the launch.
Launching the initiative with Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein, in the presence of Tourism Minister Nakap Nalo, Secretary Sadhana Deori and Director Abu Tayeng from DK Convention Centre here, Khandu said that the government is focused on uplifting the tourism sector.
“We should go for high-end tourism and should target high-end tourists,” the CM said, adding that his government would formulate a policy with the help of the stakeholders to promote high-end tourism.
“With this initiative, I hope our own people would get the opportunity to see our own state,” Khandu said. He asked the tourism department to ensure that tour operators are well-informed and efficient “to avoid misinformation and distorted stories about Arunachal given to tourists.”
The CM and the DCM flagged off 12 vehicles with 60 tour operators and a few bloggers divided into three groups. The eastern Arunachal group will be visiting western Arunachal, the western Arunachal group will be travelling to eastern Arunachal, and the central Arunachal group will be visiting Mechuka and other areas with tourism potential.
It will be a 10-day journey to explore areas with tourism potential and interact with different tribes and learn about their cultures and traditions.
Mein lauded the initiative and said it would revive the tourism sector after the industry having been badly hit by the coronavirus pandemic. The DCM further informed that, with the relaxation of restriction on local tourists after the lockdown, the footfalls of local tourists in Namsai have gone up overwhelmingly.
Nalo informed that the tourism department has already accelerated tourism activities, “keeping in view that local tourism could be promoted.” Deori informed that another three groups will be launched by the end of April or May 2021.
“We start this as an initiative of the department and we hope this initiative will be carried forward by all our stakeholders. Let’s see our own state first, and then we welcome our domestic tourists,” Deori said.