Resort opened at Attari-Wagha border

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New Delhi, Oct 7 (UNI) Tourism and Culture Minister Ambika Soni has inaugurated a tourist resort, Aman Umeed Bhawan, at Attari-Wagha international border in Amritsar.

Aman Umeed Bhawan was earlier popularly known as Neem Chameli.

The complex has been built in an area of about 10,000 sq ft and is spread over 1.75 acres of land, with the facilities of restaurants, bar and shops for the domestic as well as foreign tourists, and in particular Pakistani visitors.

Speaking on the occasion, Ms Soni said the flow of tourists from across the border would help in further promoting peace between the two countries.

Punjab Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal also attended the function.

She said Punjab had the potential to develop MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conference and Entertainment) tourism in a big way and the Centre would provide all help to establish a Convention Centre in the State.

Ms Soni informed the Aman Umeed Bhawan project was fully funded by the Union Ministry of Tourism. The grant given for the resort development was Rs 1.24 crore, she added.

Amritsar has also been provided the financial support from the Ministry of Tourism for other projects like the integrated development of Amritsar with the financial support of Rs 4.83 crore lakh in the year 2005-06, which consists of the components of environmental upgradation of Ghanta Ghar Chowk, tourist facilities at Rambagh and Punjab Freedom Struggle Interpretation Centre at Govindgarh, it was learnt.

The city has also been sanctioned a mega project with a total grant of Rs 15.85 crore in this financial year, comprising the major components on composite cultural heritage walk, darshan five sarovar path, conservation and revitalisation of Town Hall, rural art, craft and architectural interpretation center, conservation of samadhis and Lahori Gate site development.

''Amritsar has thus been identified as one of the mega destinations/circuits out of the 22 identified by the Ministry of Tourism in the country for integrated development,'' Tourism Ministry sources said.

Punjab has been given Rs 48.02 crore by the Union Tourism Ministry during the Tenth five year plan and Rs 19.83 crore during the first two years of the eleventh five year plan, they added.

UNI SH RJ HS1556

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