In a huge endorsement of its sustainable tourism practices, Kerala was accorded the prestigious “Hall of Fame” status for being the best state in ‘Comprehensive Development of Tourism’ for the fourth consecutive year at the National Tourism Awards presented here on Wednesday.
The Kozhikode District Tourism Promotion Council (DTPC) was adjudged the best in the category, a statement said.
The awards were presented by Vice President Jagdeep Dhankar at an impressive function at Vigyan Bhavan in New Delhi on Tuesday. Tourism and Culture Minister G Kishan Reddy presided over the function.
Kerala Tourism Development Corp (KTDC) Managing Director V Vigneshwari received the awards on behalf of Kerala Tourism.
The Hall of Fame status is given to a state or Union Territory or an organisation which has won the National Tourism Award in a particular category for the last three consecutive years and also wins it for the fourth time in the same category.
However, the winner of this status is not eligible to apply for the same category for the next three years.
The citation for the ‘Comprehensive Development of Tourism’ award reads: “Kerala’s stress on sustainability is perfectly complemented by innovative marketing and promotional techniques, helping it evolve into a paradigm for Responsible Tourism.”
As for DTPC Kozhikode, it mainly concentrates on the district tourism promotional activities on various beaches, bio-parks, hill stations, improvement of signages, and sanitation by working with local governments, heritage conservation, and preservation, coordination of tourism clubs, and creation of tourism awareness.
Two other entities of Kerala received the award – Taj Kumarakom, Kottayam, for the Best 4 Star Hotel and the Manaltheeram Ayurvedic Hospital and Research Centre Pvt Ltd for the Best Wellness Centre in the southern region.
Kerala Tourism Minister P.A. Mohamed Riyas said the Hall of Fame status in a very important category of award is quite significant as it is an eloquent testimony to the state’s sustained efforts to promote tourism through a string of innovative measures both in India and outside.
Kerala Tourism Principal Secretary K S Srinivas said tourism has been a mainstay of the state economy, but the state government has been unwavering in its focus on sustainable tourism, stringent quality control, and conservation and preservation efforts.