(Pranam Paryatan Bureau)

New Delhi:In a huge recognition to its sustainable tourism practices, Kerala has been accorded the prestigious “Hall of Fame” status for being the Best State/UT in the category of ‘Comprehensive Development of Tourism’ for the fourth consecutive year at the National Tourism Awards 2018-19. The Kozhikode District Tourism Promotion Council (DTPC) was adjudged the best in the category.

The awards were presented by Vice-President Mr Jagdeep Dhankhar at Vigyan Bhavan in Delhi.  The Tourism and Culture Minister Mr G. Kishan Reddy presided over the function.

The Kerala Tourism Development Corporation (KTDC) Managing Director Ms V Vigneshwari received the awards on behalf of Kerala Tourism.

The Hall of Fame status is given to a state/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.”

The DTPC Kozhikode got accolades for its promotional activities on 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 institutions in Kerala received the award – Taj Kumarakom, Kottayam, for the Best 4 Star Hotel and Manaltheeram Ayurvedic Hospital & Research Centre Pvt Ltd for the Best Wellness Centre in the Southern Region.

The Kerala Tourism Minister Mr P. A. Mohamed Riyas said the Hall of Fame status in an important category of award is 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.

The Kerala Tourism Principal Secretary Mr K. S. Srinivas said tourism has been the mainstay of the state economy, and the state government has been unwavering in its focus on sustainable tourism, stringent quality control, as well as conservation and preservation efforts.