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Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Shillong set for International Tourism Mart

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SHILLONG, Nov 21: Meghalaya’s scenic capital Shillong is all
set for a three-day mega event starting Tuesday that will
highlight the tourism potential of India’s northeast region
and its rich biodiversity while laying emphasis on the
government’s Mission LiFE.
Nearly 100 delegates, including domestic and international
ones, would be participating in the 11th edition of the
International Tourism Mart (ITM) which is slated to be
inaugurated here by Union Tourism minister G Kishan Reddy
in the evening, officials said.
This ITM is going to be a “unique event” as it has been
planned as a ‘green’ event by adopting low-carbon options
on the lines of the action points formulated by the Ministry
of environment, forest and climate change for the
implementation of Mission LiFE, officials said.
Mission LiFE (Lifestyle for Environment) is an India-led global
mass movement to nudge individual and community action
to protect and preserve the environment.

The ITM 2023 will be held in Shillong from November 21 to
23, the tourism ministry said on Monday.
The ministry, in a statement, said it has sanctioned the
development of 22 viewpoints in the northeast region at the
cost of Rs 44.44 crore to provide world-class infrastructure
and related services for the highway network through
commercial spaces, logistic parks, and traveller facilities such
as wayside amenities.
The ITM is an “annual event held by the Ministry of tourism
in one of the Northeastern states on a rotation basis, with an
objective to provide a bigger platform to the stakeholders in
the Northeast to interact with their counterparts from both
within the country and overseas markets as well as to create
awareness about the tourism potential of Northeast region,”
the ministry said.
The earlier editions of this ITM have been held in Guwahati,
Tawang, Shillong, Gangtok, Agartala, Imphal, Kohima and
Aizwal. Shillong will be hosting this event for the second
time, since its inception, the officials said.
The ITM aims to highlight the northeast region’s unique
tourism products, rich biodiversity, its intangible heritage,
including local traditions, dance forms, arts, handicrafts and
handlooms, to a domestic and international audience.
The event will be attended by tourism ministers, senior
officials of various northeastern states, other state

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governments and heads of many tourism and hospitality
associations, they said.
Sharing details about the event, the tourism ministry said,
“There will be no use of SUP (single-use plastic), a digital and
paperless route will be followed, as well as a tree plantation
drive will be undertaken.”
The event will include an exclusive session dedicated to
business meetings between tourism stakeholders in the
northeast and domestic and international buyers.
Knowledge sessions and panel discussions would deliberate
on the advances and development of connectivity in the
region, it said.
The air connectivity in the northeast has increased
tremendously in the last few years. At present, there are
more than 16 airports providing accessibility to tourist
destinations in the northeast region, the ministry said.
The Ministry of Tourism has collaborated with the Ministry of
civil aviation under their RCS-UDAN Scheme. As part of this
collaboration, 53 tourism routes have become operational of
which 10 routes are exclusively for the Northeast region.
“The three vistadome trains operating in the northeast
region have greatly contributed to not only connectivity, but
also in enhancing its tourism appeal,” it said.

To take forward the ‘Travel for LiFE’, a sectoral programme
initiated by the Ministry of Tourism under the aegis of
Mission LiFE, the ministry is working with all stakeholders in
the tourism ecosystem including the state governments,
industry, destinations and tourists, officials said.
The ‘Travel for LiFE’ programme aims to position India as a
leader in promoting sustainable and responsible tourism and
using tourism as a vehicle for achieving Sustainable
Development Goals by 2030.
Sixteen projects have been sanctioned in the Northeast
states under the Swadesh Darshan Scheme for a total
amount of Rs 1,309 crore, the tourism ministry said. (PTI)

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