Aurangabad declared as tourism capital of Maharashtra by Tourism Minister Dr Vijay Kumar Gavit

50 per cent tax concessions for the hospitality industry to tide over off-season problem

Travel News
Travel News

Aurangabad Tourism Conclave was organised by Maharashtra Chamber of Commerce and Agriculture (MACCIA) to explore tourism potential of Aurangabad and Marathwada region. Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel and Rajendra Darda, Industries Minister, Maharashtra inaugurated the Conclave. 

Dr Vijay Kumar Gavit, Tourism Minister, Maharashtra declared Aurangabad as the ‘Tourism capital of Maharashtra’, as well as announced 50 per cent tax concessions for the hospitality industry to tide over off-season problem. Besides, Patel also announced the introduction of Air India’s daily direct flights from Delhi to Aurangabad effective November 1, 2010 with an introductory fare of Rs 4,000. Patel also fulfilled a 11 year-old demand of hoteliers in Aurangabad by announcing the revival of Udaipur – Aurangabad flight, which operated for almost 30 years and was abruptly suspended on November 1, 1999. 

The Conclave witnessed participation of 65 tour operators from New Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, besides hoteliers, and the Counsel General of Korea, Consul General of China and Consul General of Ethiopia. The Conclave also had presentations made by eminent speakers on tourism in Aurangabad. The delegates also visited Ellora Caves and Bibi-ka-Maqbara. 

The Conclave was organised by MACCIA along with various government departments like Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC); Ministry of Tourism, Government of India and associations of traders and industrialists like Marathwada Chamber of Trade and Commerce (MCTC); Aurangabad Hotels and Restaurant Association etc. Gavit said that the Aurangabad Heritage Corridor will be marketed in the world, especially in Buddhist countries. Aurangabad and Marathwada region account for the largest number of monuments- Ajanta and Ellora. Various tourist facilities were coming up in the district, including a golf course, informed Gavit. 

Stating that Maharashtra is set to celebrate 2011 as Tourism Year, Gavit said that a core committee has been formed to create a master plan for tourism in the state. He also announced 50 per cent tax relief to the hospitality industry, stating that the state government was aware of the problems they faced during off-season. He informed that the state tourism department has also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the forest department to promote Ecotourism in Maharashtra. “The tourism department is extending financial assistance of Rs 150 crore to the forest department for development of Ecotourism facilities in the forest areas,” added Gavit. Various speakers including Mansingh Pawaar, President, MACCIA; Ram Bhogale, Convenor, Aurangabad Tourism Conclave and MP Chandrakant Khaire said that Aurangabad deserved to be declared as tourism capital of Maharashtra and required adequate infrastructure development.