Paul Lyngdoh, the Meghalaya Cabinet Minister in charge of tourism department, said on September 28 that the implementation of the Inner Line Permit (ILP) will not impact the number of tourists visiting the State of Meghalaya.
After the Indian Responsible Tourism State Summit & Awards 2023 - Meghalaya Chapter programme at the State Convention Centre in Shillong, the Minister gave a press conference.
Using Israel's strong visitor (tourist) rules as an example, the tourism minister emphasised that despite Israel's rigorous visitor restrictions, its tourism industry is still flourishing. Therefore, Minister Lyngdoh reaffirmed that the Inner Line Permit's implementation in Meghalaya won't interfere with tourism.
“Israel is a very difficult country to access by visitors, but looking at their tourism revenues it is among the top in the world”, said Lyngdoh.
He went on to compare the rigorous VISA system of Israel with the ILP implemented in various North East states, stating, “their VISA system is more rigorous than the ILP being implemented in some of the states…there are a lot of things that can be fused it all is a matter of how you prioritise”, he added.
Lyngdoh emphasized that it is a combination of different government initiatives that ensures they cater to the right kind of tourist.
He further mentioned that nearly 15 lakh tourists, both domestic and international, visited the State, even though it lacks proper air and railway connectivity with other states, relying solely on road connectivity.
During the event, the Minister awarded Guest House and Homestay owners who have been actively contributing to the promotion of tourism in the State. These awards were sponsored by Outlook Travellers and the Department of Tourism, Government of Meghalaya.
The awards were categorized into different segments, including Home-stays, Guest Houses, AirB&Bs, Travel Enterprises, Architecture, Food, Grassroot Heroes, and Cultural Ambassadors.
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