SUBJECT :Various themes, including beaches, culture, heritage and wildlife that are unique and specific to the area were to be developed as special circuits under the scheme to attract tourists. 

Bhubaneswar, December 12, 2019:  Even as Odisha Government has been prioritising development of infrastructure and promotion of eco-tourism destinations of the State, it has failed to submit any proposal for development of eco-circuit under the Swadesh Darshan Scheme.

The Central Sector Scheme launched in 2014-15 for integrated development of theme-based tourist circuits in the country is about to expire in March.

Various themes, including beaches, culture, heritage and wildlife that are unique and specific to the area were to be developed as special circuits under the scheme to attract tourists.

Replying to an unstarred question by MP Sarojini Hembram in Rajya Sabha, Union Minister for Tourism (independent charge) Prahlad Singh Patel said no proposal has been submitted by Odisha for any eco-tourism project under the scheme.

“The Ministry of Tourism has identified Eco Circuit as one of the 15 thematic circuits under the Swadesh Darshan Scheme. But, no proposal has so far been received from Odisha Government for development of eco-tourism in the State,” he said. Patel, however, informed that the Ministry has sanctioned development of ‘Coastal Circuit’ that comprises Gopalpur, Barkul, Satapada and Tampara in Odisha during 2016-17.

The Forest and Environment department has launched a five-year scheme from 2016 to 2021 for development of ecotourism.

“Ecotourism facilities for night stay are functioning in different parts of Odisha which are managed by the forest-dependent communities and more such facilities are being planned,” he added.

In response to another question, the Minister said `37.61 crore has been released so far for development of Gopalpur, Barkul, Satapada and Tampara as Odisha Coastal Circuit sanctioned in 2016-17 for Rs 70.82 crore.

Similarly, for infrastructure development of Shree Jagannath Dham-Ramachandi-Prachi riverfront at Deuli under mega circuit sanctioned in 2014-15 at the cost of `50 crore under PRASHAD Scheme, Rs 10 crore has been released so far.


Source: www.newindianexpress.com