The Rajasthan state cabinet has approved the state Tourism Policy 2020, which is aimed at rebuilding the marketing strategy for international branding of tourism and promote domestic tourism. It also proposes to strengthen the tourist assistance force and encourage start-ups in the sector.
With a vision to re-position Rajasthan as a preferred tourism destination for both domestic as well as international tourists, the objective of the new tourism policy is to strengthen and diversify existing tourism products; provide innovative tourism products and services with focus on lesser-known destinations especially in rural areas; improve the connectivity of tourist destinations through road, rail and air; expand tourist accommodation infrastructure; and take steps to encourage private sector investment in the state. Approving a new tourism policy for the state, the cabinet has called for constituting a state tourism advisory committee under the chairmanship of the chief minister. The current District Tourism Development Committee headed by the district collector has been given more executive powers. The panel will be responsible for all work related to tourism development in a district.
As per the five-year policy, two to three prominent monuments or sites in each division of the state will be developed as ‘Iconic Monuments’ or sites to be managed by the new district committees. ‘Special heritage village’ and ‘special craft village’ will also be declared in each district.
Pristine locations with sand dunes in untapped areas such as stretches around Sambhar, Pushkar, Nagaur and Bikaner will also be identified and promoted as new desert destinations. For adventure tourism, special incentives will be given to promote aero tourism (hot air ballooning, parachuting, paragliding, parasailing, etc.), aqua tourism (boating, paddle boating, angling, jet skiing, etc.), land-based tourism (trekking, rock climbing, rappelling, safaris, quad biking, ATV, birding, etc.) and cruise tourism in the Chambal river and Banswara backwaters. For M!CE tourism, suitable locations will be identified, graded and listed by the tourism department. A cell will be set up to facilitate approvals for promoters establishing convention centres of national and international standards. Tourism units engaged in M!CE activities will be provided table space at subsidised rates in Rajasthan Tourism pavilions in domestic and international travel marts. For rural tourism, a Tourism Development Fund will be set up which will be used to support the development of rural infrastructure in identified villages. For the hospitality sector, a scheme for classification of all tourism units will be launched. Suitable measures will also be taken to revive properties of RTDC.