Poor sanitation would mar tourism, says President Pranab Mukherjee

New Delhi, Sept 18: Appreciating the cleanliness campaign launched at tourist sites, President Pranab Mukherjee on Friday said "inconsistent sanitation standards" at these places would have a negative impact on tourism and asked all stakeholders to work together to achieve the goal of clean India.

"The Ministry of Tourism's Swach Bharat-Swach Parayatan campaign to promote cleanliness and hygiene at tourist destinations is a welcome step in the right direction," he said at the national tourism awards event here.

President Pranab Mukherjee

"Inconsistent sanitation standards would, similarly, have a negative impact. This would be unfortunate – especially at a time when our tourism industry is projecting the unique beauty of our cultural sites, the scenic splendour of our adventure destinations and the richness of our architectural heritage," he said.

The President called upon all stakeholders to work together to achieve this goal in all aspects of the "India" experience and stressed that it is essential for the Tourism Ministry to take the lead and set the highest standards in this regard.

"It is equally important to develop systems for effective monitoring to ensure that these standards are maintained by establishments across the board," he said. Referring to the safety concerns, the President said, "The safety mechanisms that we create, the precautions that we put in place must reassure our guests - so that they never have to be apprehensive about their personal safety or that of their belongings."

He said the Ministry of Tourism has taken the initiative to address the safety concerns of the tourists by launching 24x7 Incredible India Helpline to provide the tourists valuable information and to guide them during emergencies.

He said quicker access to distant locations, larger disposable incomes and rising lifestyle aspirations now characterise the growing numbers of travellers.

Highlighting the need to conserve natural resources and heritage, the President urged the tourism industry to consciously plan its investments in a manner that the growth of this sector is sustained without compromising natural and cultural heritage.

Advocating new and innovative methods to conserve energy and water, he said, "It should be incumbent on tourist establishments and hospitality units to operate in a way that they are able to reduce water and energy consumption, cut down on generation of waste, improve waste management and ensure creative recycling and efficient waste disposal." 


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