landing img
Spend

Sitharaman Gives A Boost To Spiritual Tourism In Interim Budget 2024

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman sought a huge boost for the country’s spiritual tourism economywith a higher outlay in the budget.

Avatar
Outlook Money
February 2, 2024
Sitharaman Gives A Boost To Spiritual Tourism

Sitharaman Gives A Boost To Spiritual Tourism

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday proposed Rs 2,449.62 crore for tourism development around key religious sites in the country. Sitharaman stressed it has tremendous opportunities for local entrepreneurship. This budgetary support was an increase from Rs 2,400 crore in FY2023-24. The money will enable the government’s Integrated Development of Tourist Circuits programme to develop more sites nationwide.

The increased funding will help promote tourism around themes like Swadesh Darshan, which is set to receive Rs 1,750 crore, up from Rs 1,412 crore in 2023-24. Besides, for publicity, promotion and marketing, Rs 176.97 crore has been allocated, up from Rs 75 crore in 2023-24.

Stressing the government’s commitment for spiritual tourism growth in India in her interim Budget for 2024-45, Sitharaman said, “Our middle class aspires to travel and explore. Tourism, including spiritual tourism, has tremendous opportunities for local entrepreneurship.”

She said a framework to rate spiritual tourism centers based on their facilities, services, and quality will be developed, and the states are encouraged to develop their ‘iconic centers’ and brand and market them globally. She said interest-free loans may also be provided to them for this purpose. These announcements give be a huge boost to the local tour operators around the country against the backdrop of the Ram Mandir pilgrimage in Uttar Pradesh’s Ayodhya.

Also Read: Interim Budget 2024: How Does New Personal Tax Policy Apply On Senior Citizens?

Also, the budget for overseas promotion, publicity, and market development has been reduced from Rs 167 crore to Rs 3 crore for FY2024-25.“To address the emerging fervor for domestic tourism, projects for port connectivity, tourism infrastructure, and amenities will be undertaken on our islands, including Lakshadweep. This will also generate employment,” said the FM.

For FY2024-25, the outlay for the “Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual Heritage Augmentation Drive” (PRASHAD) scheme, launched in 2014-15 to promote religious tourism in India, is Rs 240 crore. Recently, the investment bank and securities research company, Jefferies, projected that Ayodhya would receive more than 50 million tourists annually by 2050.

According to PTI, the Ram temple in Ayodhya received around 25 lakh visitors in the 11 days following the consecration ceremony. It could be an example for other cities and states to develop spiritual tourism and local entrepreneurs.

Also Read: Interim Budget 2024: What Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman Said About Personal Tax?

The infrastructural development and push for branding the city have not only attracted a tremendous number of tourists but also are set to create employment opportunities as the city develops, including for hotels, travel companies, railways, flight operators, and more.

Related Articles

Advertisement

Advertisement

Previous Retirement Issues

  • magzine
  • magzine
  • magzine
  • magzine

Group Publications

  • magzine
  • magzine
  • magzine
  • magzine