Tourism Industry Sidelined in Union Budget – Prateek Hira speaks to The Pioneer

Uttar Pradesh Chairman of IATO and FICCI’s Tourism Committee, Prateek Hira, said the tourism industry was once again sidelined in the Union budget as no direct benefit was passed on to it, in spite of the fact that this was the most ailing of all sectors due to the pandemic.
Hira added, “The extension of ECLGS through 2023 is a welcome step and allocation of additional Rs 50,000 crore dedicated to tourism would bring in some relief for the industry.”Prateek Hira is quite upbeat about the announcements regarding multi modal transport for convenient travel, introduction of new Vande Bharat trains and detailed projects of five river systems.

In addition to that, the eight ropeways and integrated connectivity between train stations and expansion of 25,000 kilometres of highways in the country is a thrust on creating a tourism ecosystem for the long term growth of tourism in India, he feels. E-passport by 2023 would
be a step that would place India among the developed nations and create a seamless foreign travel for Indians, Hira said, adding that this
would also enhance the credibility of the Indian passports. “The renewed thrust on the development of infrastructure in the North-East given in this budget will also boost tourism in this highly potential region that has been neglected for quite some time,” he said.

Hira added: “As a business person we have to be greedy and always wanting more from the budget so it is justified to say that we were expecting much more, at least in direct benefits which we did not get”.