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Friday, 04 September, 2020, 11 : 04 AM [IST]

Odisha keen to develop circuits for river cruise tourism

In a bid to revive the tourism industry amid Covid-19 pandemic, the Odisha government on Thursday announced plans to revive river cruise tourism on public private partnership (PPP) mode, reports The Indian Express. 

Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy directed the Tourism Department to chalk out modalities while exploring possibilities of innovative tourism activities at high level meeting with experts and stakeholders on digital mode.

Tourism Secretary Vishal Dev said three principal river cruise circuits can be developed in river Mahanadi, Chilika lake and in water bodies in reserve forest near Dangamala including the National Water Way-5 from Dhamara to Paradip. Bhitarkanika circuit can connect the spots like Chandbali-Aradi-Dhamara-Khola to other spots in Bhitarkanika wildlife sanctuary. This circuit can be a five nights and six days cruise.

Chilika circuit can connect Chilika, Kalijai-Nalabana-Honeymoon island-Mangalajodi-Satapada-Rajhans island-Satapada and Puri. It could be a three night and four days cruise.

“River cruise is compatible with Covid-19 restrictions. There is a huge scope and latent market for world-class river cruising in Odisha. It can also be connected with many eco-spots and refill the economic activities in the sector,” Tripathy said.

Issues relating to various regulatory permissions, compliance to pollution norms, river jetties and bar license were discussed at the meeting. The Chief Secretary said the State Government will provide all support for this activity. State PPP cell was advised to work out the details in consultation with department of Tourism and Odisha Tourism Development Corporation. 

He asked Tourism Department to coordinate with Inland Waterways Authority regarding statutory requirements. (Source: The Indian Express)

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