Work underway for construction of viewpoints in NE

NEW DELHI, 19 Feb: Work has started on construction of nearly 40 viewpoints along highways in the Northeast to promote tourism in the region, according to union minister G Kishan Reddy.
Last November, the union tourism and culture minister had announced in Aizawl that 100 viewpoints would be constructed along highways in the Northeast region, starting with nine in Mizoram.
He had made the announcement in the Mizoram capital ahead of India assuming the year-long presidency of the G20 on 1 December last year.
Some of the G20 meetings are planned to be held across the Northeast region and Aizawl will host one of these, Reddy had then told reporters in Aizawl.
At an interaction held in Delhi recently, the union tourism minister shared the status of various projects under his ministry and the future plans.
“India is showcasing its power in the world and has risen on various indices in the tourism sector,” said Reddy, who also holds the portfolio of the DoNER ministry.
On the tourism-specific projects in the Northeast region, he said that, of the 100 viewpoints which will be constructed along highways in the Northeast, work has begun on nearly 40 viewpoints.
“We will work with the DoNER ministry and the NHAI for these viewpoints, which will have basic amenities for travellers besides providing a scenic place to view for tourists,” Reddy said.
These viewpoints will be wayside amenities with toilet facility and a basic cafeteria, and also a ‘selfie point’ for tourists.
Reddy had also said that his ministry would work together with other ministers to promote tourism-related projects.
“The BRO (Border Roads Organisation) has built BRO cafes along 75 border area roads in 12 states. Also, the union cabinet has given approval to the Vibrant Villages Programme (VVP), and we will also work to promote it,” he said.
The tourism ministry will also focus on tourism infrastructure and amenities under the VVP in the border villages, the minister said.
The union cabinet recently approved the centrally-sponsored Vibrant Villages Programme (VVP) for the financial years 2022-23 to 2025-26 with an allocation of Rs 4,800 crore.
The scheme will provide funds for development of essential infrastructure and creation of livelihood opportunities in 19 districts and 46 border blocks in four states and one UT along the northern land border of the country, which will help in achieving inclusive growth and retaining the population in the border areas.
In the first phase, 663 villages will be taken up in the programme, the government has said. (PTI)