Friday, 18 January, 2019

Reginaldo rues decline in tourist footfalls, junks US trip

27th May 2018, 07:25 Hrs

MARGAO: Congress MLA Reginaldo Lourenco on Saturday lamented that tourism industry, the most important revenue earner of the state, is systematically deteriorating as there are no “focussed” policies being pursued unceasingly by the Manohar Parrikar’s BJP-led government.

Addressing the media, the three-time Congress MLA said the indicators in the decline in tourist footfalls especially of high-end ones are palpable all around. “The arrivals of cruise vessels at MPT have witnessed a sharp decline of 23 per cent in comparison to last year,” he pointed out.

“It is a big shame for us Goemkars that our tourism policies are short sighted and lack substance for sustainable growth. What is being promoted in the name of tourism is making Goa like Macau or Las Vegas of India by making it a destination for casinos, a sin industry, which is synonymous with plethora of vices like prostitution, drugs, money laundering etc,” he added.

Reginaldo said the latest decision of Goa government to send a high-level official delegation from May 20 to United States for a tourism road show is an absurd one because tourists from this North American country account for less than two per cent of the total international tourists coming to Goa. “Let us not forget the Congress government led by Pratapsing Rane two decades back had rejected similar sort of a tour by the tourism officials to the USA,” he recalled, adding, 

“We actually don’t know if the tour has been conducted to see Manohar Parrikar, who is currently in the USA and combine it as a family outing-cum-jaunt, which is synonymous with blatant corruption.”