Hoteliers want Covid curbs eased to revive tourism

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The hotel industry has urged the government to relax stringent conditions imposed amid the Covid pandemic. Hoteliers, whose units have been shut since March 20, are finding it difficult to survive.

In a representation to the government, the Tourism Industry Stakeholders’ Association said tourists were facing harassment due to a lack of clarity on the part of the implementing authorities. The hoteliers had also met Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, Urban Development Minister Suresh Bhardwaj and the Chief Secretary recently and highlighted the issues being faced by them.

“Tourists are unwilling to visit Himachal. They have to procure a negative Covid test report for every member of the family. Most of them do not want to prolong the stay, but the rules make five-day hotel booking mandatory,” says the representation.

The hoteliers said the condition of a mandatory Covid-negative test report must be done away with. “After Unlock-3, some hoteliers opened their units with the hope to get some business. But due to stringent rules, tourists are hesitating and not visiting the hill state,” said Mohinder Seth, general secretary of the association.

He said other tourist states such as Rajasthan, Kerala and Goa have no entry restrictions. Checking should be done only while entering the state and the Covid test should not be mandatory for those coming for 72 hours. The e-registration system should also be simplified and the time for hotels till 8 pm should be further extended.

Source : The Tribune

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