Tourism infrastructure will be developed in islands including Lakshadweep: Nirmala Sitharaman 


Lakshadweep

New Delhi: Putting a thrust on boosting domestic tourism, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday said that the tourism infrastructure and amenities will be taken up on our islands, including Lakshadweep.

The Union Finance Minister, while presenting the Interim Budget 2024 also stated that the success of organizing G20 meetings in sixty places presented a diversity of India to a global audience.

“To address the emerging fervour for domestic tourism, projects for port connectivity, tourism infrastructure, and amenities will be taken up on our islands, including Lakshadweep. This will help in generating employment also,” Sitharaman said.

Recently, a campaign to promote Lakshadweep and other unexplored islands of the country started after PM Modi in the first week of January, visited Lakshadweep and shared a couple of pictures, showing the “stunning beauty of its islands”. From “early morning walks” to trying snorkelling, the Indian prime minister said his visit to the islands was “an enriching journey of learning and growing”.

The Administrator of Union Territories of Dadra and Nagar Haveli said, “I am confident that this will develop the culture of beach games, promote the sports talents of the union territory and increase the tourism potential of the union territory. The event will attract locals and tourists alike.”

Besides this, during her speech, Sitharaman said that states will be encouraged to take up comprehensive development of iconic tourist centres, branding and marketing them at a global scale.

She further added that long-term interest-free loans will be provided to states for financing such development on a matching basis.

In order to promote comprehensive development of the centres, the Union Minister said that a framework for rating of the centres based on quality of facilities and services will be established.

Noting the success of G20 last year, the Union Finance Minister in her Budget speech said that the success of organizing G20 meetings in sixty places presented a diversity of India to a global audience.

“The success of organizing G20 meetings in sixty places presented diversity of India to global audience. Our economic strength has made the country an attractive destination for business and conference tourism. Our middle class also now aspires to travel and explore. Tourism, including spiritual tourism, has tremendous opportunities for local entrepreneurship,” she said.

Further, in relief to the citizens, the central government neither tweaked nor raised the tax burden on citizens.

“As for tax proposals, in keeping with the convention, I do not propose to make any changes relating to taxation and propose to retain the same tax rates for direct taxes and indirect taxes including import duties,” said Sitharaman.

The Finance Minister concluded her budget presentation with a positive outlook, signalling the government’s determination to continue fostering inclusive growth and development.

The Interim Budget 2024 is expected to undergo thorough scrutiny and debates in the coming days in the Parliament, as stakeholders assess its potential impact on the nation’s economic trajectory. (ANI)



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