Fresh initiatives and achievements will be needed by stakeholders in tourism business be it DMCs, Tour Operators, Travel Agents, States, or any entity desirous of winning the National Tourism Award in successive years. Yes! The National Tourism Awards this year will end the practice of same entities or states winning the same award again and again!
Unofficially, it had become such a norm that every year the interested stakeholders would file the same nomination and all it required was to fill in fresh numbers. This year, Hall of Fame Awards have been introduced, which will be given to States, Organisations, Agencies which have the National Tourism Award in the same category for the last three consecutive years. Recipients of the Hall of Fame Awards will be eligible to apply for the National Tourism Award in the same category after three years.
The date for the Awards has been selected to coincide with World Tourism Day, which is celebrated annually on 27th September, to coincide with the anniversary of adoption of the statutes of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO). Its purpose is to foster awareness among the international community of the importance of tourism and its social, cultural, political and economic value. The theme for World Tourism Day 2017, as announced by UNWTO is “Sustainable Tourism – a Tool for Development”.
The President of India Ram Nath Kovind will present “National Tourism Awards” to various segments of the travel, tourism and hospitality industry at a function organised by Ministry of Tourism in Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi on World Tourism Day (27 September,2017). The function will be presided over by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Tourism Alphons Kannanthanam.
National Tourism Awards are being given since the early 1990s and are presented to State Governments / Union Territories, classified hotels, heritage hotels, approved travel agents, tour operators and tourist transport operators, individuals and other private organizations in recognition of their performance in their respective fields and also to encourage healthy competition with an aim to promote tourism. In an attempt to encourage States and Union Territories to put into place effective mechanisms for maintaining cleanliness at tourist destinations, a new Category of award “Swachhta Award” has been introduced this year. Other new categories of awards being introduced this year include “Best State for Adventure Tourism” and “Best Wildlife Guide”.
The Award function will also include launch of the Incredible India 2.0 Campaign; Launch of ‘Adopt A Heritage’ Project; and Design Launch of Incredible India Website although industry earlier was expecting the new National Tourism Policy to be rolled out by 27 September 2017.