Cabinet eases entry norms for tourists

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Following the Centre’s directive to allow the unhindered movement of people and goods, the Himachal Government yesterday made several relaxations to make entry into the state easier though e-registration on the Covid portal will remain mandatory.

The decision to offer relaxations to those keen to enter Himachal was taken by the Cabinet, which met here under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur. The issue came up for discussion following a letter by the Union Home Secretary to all chief secretaries in this regard.

The Cabinet decided that the present system of mandatory registration on e-Covid portal would continue as it was essential to facilitate mapping if anyone tested positive. It felt that borders would not be allowed to open and inter-state public transport not to be resumed.

DCs had been directed to expedite the approvals for e-registration as this did not amount to violation of the Central directives. The Cabinet also discussed the opening of temples but no decision could be taken.

The hotel industry too got a relief as the mandatory Covid negative report for tourists now exempts children below 10 years and its period has been raised from 72 hours to 96 hours.

The mandatory five-day hotel booking for tourists too has been reduced to two days. It has also been decided that if any guest tests positive in a hotel, it will not be sealed and only the room, restaurant or the area he has visited will be sealed.

In another important decision, the Cabinet gave its nod for doing away with Plan and Non-Plan classification of budget from the financial year 2021-22 as there is a severe resource crunch and it will give flexibility to the government to use funds liberally.

The Cabinet also approved creating 230 gram panchayats ahead of the panchayati raj polls due by end of the year. These include 65 in Mandi, 35 in Shimla, 33 in Kangra, 18 in Chamba, besides others.

It gave its nod to provide government guarantee to the HP State Electricity Board to raise a loan of Rs 455 crore from the Power Finance Corporation for clearing various dues.


Relief for visitors

  • The mandatory Covid negative report for tourists now exempts children below 10 years and its period has been raised from 72 hours to 96 hours
  • The mandatory five-day hotel booking for tourists too has been reduced to two days
  • It has also been decided that if any guest tests positive in a hotel, it will not be sealed and only the room, restaurant or the area he has visited will be sealed

Source : The Tribune

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