MOT ensures safe adventures

The Ministry of Tourism (MOT) along with the Adventure Tour Operators Association of India (ATOAI) recently launched a set of guidelines on ‘Safety and Quality Norms for Adventure Tourism in India’.

Nisha Verma

KJ Alphons, Minister of State (I/C) for Tourism, recently released the guidelines by Government of India on adventure tourism, formulated along with the Adventure Tour Operators Association of India (ATOAI) in an effort to make adventure sports safer. Held at Samrat Hotel, New Delhi, the launch event saw in attendance the MOT delegation led by Alphons, including Rashmi Verma, Secretary, Tourism and Suman Billa, Joint Secretary, Tourism. Swadesh Kumar, President, ATOAI, was also present at the event along with Ajeet Bajaj, Senior Vice President, ATOAI.

Speaking at the launch, Alphons said, “We have brought these guidelines out for 29 activities on land, air and water. We believe that adventure tourism is going to be a one trillion dollar industry in the next 10 years. Currently, it’s a 490 billion dollar industry worldwide, and we want to have a big pie of that in India because we have incredible natural resources for adventure tourism.”

“We believe that adventure tourism is going to be a one trillion industry in the next 10 years. Currently, it’s a 490 billion dollar industry worldwide”

Addressing the need for the implementation of guidelines, he said, “It’s important to lay down protocol for these activities as we want people to be safe. ATOAI will work with the government and MOT would provide every assistance required to the state governments and associations to create basic facilities.”

Kumar added, “It took us one year to frame these guidelines and the government has been very kind to officially launch it. It’s like an operating system on how to operate your business. The document gives you qualifications for guides as well as for camping policy. Information is also available on what guides need to do in case of an accident and other mishaps.”

Would MOT be also licensing service providers in the adventure tourism category? Alphons explained, “After these guidelines, we will work with the states to ensure that these guidelines are followed. Those with accreditation will stand a chance of getting more clients, an incentive enough for individual operators.”

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