Bengaluru, Sep 22; The Minister for Law, Parliamentary Affairs, and Tourism, Mr. H.K. Patil, announced today that the private sector has voluntarily committed Rs. 500 crore for developing tourism in Karnataka, with the government serving as a facilitator. He made this statement during the curtain-raiser event for the 'Dakshin Bharat Utsav,' scheduled to take place from December 14 to 16 in Bengaluru. Additionally, the Minister unveiled a government plan to protect, conserve, and develop nearly 550 monuments available for 'adoption.' These monuments, which include temples, churches, mosques, and other heritage sites, will be opened for tourism, creating opportunities for investment and employment generation. The innovative program is set to launch on September 25.
Commending the private sector's decision to invest voluntarily in the tourism sector, Mr. Patil stated that even though some ventures may not be profitable, they will provide a unique global experience. With Karnataka boasting four UNESCO-recognized heritage sites, including the recent addition of Belur, Halebidu, and Somanathapura of the Hoysala architecture, alongside Hampi, Pattadkal, and the Western Ghats, the state anticipates increased visitor numbers. He also emphasized Karnataka's diverse tourism offerings, encompassing heritage, adventure, beach tourism, pilgrimage, and environmental attractions.
Kapil Mohan, the Additional Chief Secretary of Karnataka, welcomed the 'Dakshin Bharat Utsav' concept and stressed the need for southern states to collaborate in promoting tourism. He highlighted the untapped potential of the Western Ghats, the expansive Deccan Plateau spanning multiple states, and numerous heritage sites for tourism-friendly projects.
In his welcome address, FKCCI President, Mr. B.V. Gopal Reddy, announced the upcoming 'Dakshin Bharat Utsav' from December 14 to 16 at the Bangalore Palace Grounds, designed to showcase the rich cultural and historical heritage of South India. This event promises significant investment opportunities in tourism and serves as a platform for small and medium enterprises to invest in tourism-related activities across Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Kerala, and Puducherry, thereby stimulating revenue generation and job creation.
Mr. Reddy emphasized that Karnataka, as the host of this summit, possesses numerous heritage sites that can be developed as tourist destinations without compromising their historical significance. The state proudly boasts UNESCO World Heritage sites, along with 600 Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) protected monuments and 800 state-protected monuments.
The Chairman of FKCCI Tourism Committee, Mr. G.K. Shetty, revealed that the 'Dakshin Bharat Utsav' will be held in rotation among southern states, with FKCCI actively participating in enhancing tourism across southern India. By improving connectivity between southern states, this initiative aims to increase tourist mobility, resulting in more employment opportunities and foreign exchange earnings.