Patna: Highlighting renewed emphasis given to tourism sector, Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi on Thursday said the boom in arrival of tourists to the state could be gauged from the fact that visitors came to Jainism place Pawapuri from special trains this year.
Addressing "Tourism conclave 2012" in Patna, Modi said due to stress given by the NDA government to the tourism sector, visit of foreign tourists multiplied to 9,72,487 in the state in 2011 against 63,321 in 2005.
He said private investment would be encouraged for development of tourist spots like Gaya, Bodh Gaya, Rajgir-Nalanda-Pawapuri, Valmikinagar known for tiger reserve and Vaishali among others.
Modi said the state budgetary allocation for tourism has been increased to Rs 100 crore for 2012-13 against Rs 30 crore in the previous year. Underlining steps taken in the field of tourism, the Deputy CM said that 14 national highways have been selected on which the state government would provide a grant of Rs 5 lakh
for setting up roadside dhaba or hotel.
He said the state government would host International Kite festival and hot air balloon festival this year to boost flow of tourists into the state. Addressing the meet, K P S Kesri of CII-Bihar said river Ganga holds tremendous potential to harness tourism in the state.