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GFP chief, minister raise concern over tourism slump in Goa

Both Sardesai and Lobo said tourism road shows organised by the Goa government should be stopped as they were a drain on the exchequer and fetching no returns in terms of footfalls.

Saima Siddiqui

Saima SiddiquiBy Saima Siddiqui

Published on 4 Jan 2020 11:19 AM GMT

GFP chief, minister raise concern over tourism slump in Goa
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Panaji: Goa Forward Party chief Vijai Sardesai and Port minister Michael Lobo on Saturday said the tourism sector, one of the mainstays of the coastal state's economy, needs to be brought back on track.

Both Sardesai and Lobo said tourism road shows organised by the Goa government should be stopped as they were a drain on the exchequer and fetching no returns in terms of footfalls.

"First, put your house in order and then invite tourists here. You are participating in road shows but are you ready to welcome quality tourists? We are expecting high quality tourists but why should they come here, to be harassed by touts," Lobo asked.

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Addressing a press conference, Sardesai said, "Our clear cut demand is that there should be a ban on road shows.

These are nothing but picnics for the tourism minister and families."

He also hit out at the organisation of the Sunburn festival, saying the state government was justifying it claiming it brought in Rs 250 crore, despite "proliferation of drugs" there.

"We are giving a red carpet in tourism for scum of the earth. This government is solely responsible for the decline of Goa's tourism sector," he added.

Goa Tourism Minister Manohar Ajgaonkar was not available for comment but a department official said such road shows helped showcase the state's tourism sector to international travellers.

He said a slump in Goa tourism was because of UK firm Thomas Cook going bankrupt.

Chartered flights operated by Thomas Cook had brought in several thousand foreign tourists to Goa last year, he pointed out.

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(PTI)

Saima Siddiqui

Saima Siddiqui

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