Punjab beats Himachal and Goa in domestic tourism sector

Chandigarh/November 13
Punjab is fast emerging major tourist destination in terms of domestic as it has beaten Himachal and Goa in domestic tourists visits that has been pegged at 68.8 percent of state population in 2012, the Statistics of the India Tourism-2012 reveals.
While divulging details about the growth in tourism sector, Punjab’s Cultural Affairs minister Sarwan Singh Phillaur said that our tourist inflow is on rise and during the last four years, our domestic tourist visits increased from 54 lakhs in 2009 to 105 lakhs in 2010, to 164 lakhs in 2011, to 191 lakhs in 2012.”The increase of the tourists in 2012 over 2011 has been recorded at 15 percent while the foreign tourist visited during 2012 was 1.43 lakhs and is on the increase in 2013,” Phillaur said, adding that the quick estimates for the year 2013 (from January to June, 2013) reveals a big increase in both domestic tourist visits (111 lakhs) and the foreign tourist visits 1.08 lakhs) in the State.
Phillaur said that that the state government’s policies/actions are stimulant to attract more tourists to the state by extending incentives under new Industrial Policy to the tourist sector. “Tourism industry in Punjab has emerged as the second largest employment generator at national level in the state and to further enhance the tourism potential of the state, different stakeholders-sectors like hospitality, transport, aspiring artists, handloom and handicrafts etc are given the boost by the state government,” he said, adding that hotel projects, the main source of accommodation for the tourists in the state have been declared ‘Industry’ under the Industrial Policy.