Stakeholders in the tourism sector who are against the closure of places of tourist interest during Dasara holidays, have reiterated their demand to lift the restrictions on the grounds to help revive the sector.
In a memorandum addressed to the Deputy Commissioner Rohini Sindhuri, they also pointed out the what they termed as contradiction in the administration’s decision. “On the one hand, the Department of Tourism is promoting Karnataka as safe for tourists while the district administration has ordered the closure of tourist places,” the stakeholders said.
Appeal to CM
The stakeholders also met the CM, who is in Mysuru, and appealed to him to get the district administration’s order rescinded.
Ms. Sindhuri ordered the closure of all important tourist spots in Mysuru during Dasara holidays from October 17 to November 1 as a measure to curb the surge in COVID-19 cases being reported acrossthe district. Similar restrictions have been introduced in the neighbouring districts of Kodagu and Mandya.
The stakeholders, represented by Mysuru Travels’ Association, Hotel Owners’ Association, Mysore District Tourist Vehicle Drivers and Owners’ Welfare Association, Mysuru Approved Tourist Guides’ Association, and other groups said the closure will affect thousands of people who are directly and indirectly dependent on tourism.
Cost of event
They also questioned the need for spending money on illuminating the city if the tourists were to be restricted. A section of the stakeholders told mediapersons that tourists are being asked to stay away but the government was spending crores on the event though it was devoid of popular programmes like Yuva Dasara, Ahara Mela, etc. “The amount could have been utilised to ramp up city infrastructure and also to bail out the stakeholders in the tourism sector,” they added.
Prashanth, president, Mysuru Travels’ Association, said the State has lifted the restriction on the assembly of more than 100 persons under Lockdown 5.
But in Mysuru restrictions are being imposed and this comes at a time when the State has permitted even multiplexes and theatres to reopen, he said, urging the district administration to reconsider its decision on closing tourist spots.