What tourists eat and drink is none of State govt's business: says NITI Aayog chief
"What a tourist should eat and drink is his individual business and not the state's," said NITI Aayog chief Amitabh Kant. Speaking at the World Economic Forum, Kant said that the states restricting food and alcohol, especially in tourist spots, will adversely affect nation's tourism industry.
While answering a question on how tourists visiting India can relax if they are barred from making their eating and drinking choice, Kant asserted that it is not the government's business to decide what tourists should eat or drink.
"Indian states can't get into what a tourist wants to eat and drink. I believe that tourism is essentially civilizational in character," he said. He added that cleanliness needs to be the first focus and creating a seamless experience for the tourist should be the second priority. "I have said it all the time that for a tourist, it is about creating experiences. In the evening he wants to relax and chill out and therefore you need to create that evening experience for (him) in terms of Indian culture," he added.
Kant's statements come almost a month after Union tourism minister K J Alphons advised foreigners visiting India to "eat beef at home and then visit India." Kant's statements came as a reply to a question raised on states like Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Kerala and Daman announcing their plans to ban the sale of liquor.