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Newsletter Vol. 13

INDIA – AN ULTIMATE TOURIST DESTINATION

News

Indian Elections Are Over; Prime Minister, Tourism Minister Assume Charge

Recently held Indian elections are the world’s largest exercise in democracy. Stretched over the five weeks, the recently concluded elections of the country showered a decisive mandate on Mr. Narendra Modi led National Democratic Alliance by giving him clear majority. The election exercise has revealed the faces of Fifteenth government of India who will represent the people of the nation.

Mr. Narendra Modi was declared the newly elected prime minister of India on May 16th, 2014. Exactly ten days later, the PM designate declared his cabinet of 45 ministers.

Mr. Shripad Yesso Naik assumed charge as the Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Ministry of Tourism under the newly elected government. He hails from tourist-friendly Indian state, Goa and is no stranger to tourism. He has served many tourist consultative committees for previous governments and is very much aware about the standards of the industry. As the independent tourism minister, his main aim is to boost tourism and remove the bottlenecks that may be impeding the smooth inflow of tourists in the country.

India’s 29th State is Born – Telangana

India has got its 29th state, Telangana with the reorganization of Andhra Pradesh. After split, the second half of Andhra is now known as Seemandhra.

In terms of tourism, the newly formed state of India is bestowed with the mix of ancient as well as modern. It is the land where ancient empires had flourished. From Satavahanas to Kakatiyas to Golconda Sultans and Hyderabad Nizams, Telangana offers a rich tapestry of culture and heritage.

As per the current arrangement, Hyderabad will serve as a shared capital for both the states for ten years.

AirAsia sells 25,000 tickets in 48 hours, takes off with a bang

Low cost carrier Air Asia India has got off to a flying start in India. The budget airline service provider is yet to start operations in mid June 2014, but its popularity among tourists is tremendous.

The maiden flight from Bangalore to Goa got booked in less than 10 min. The response is tremendous and the company is looking forward to expand its reach in different cities of India soon.

India First Floating Hotel In Mumbai

Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC), in partnership with WB International Consultants and AB Hospitality, has launched the country’s first floating hotel (floatel), named ‘AB Celestial’, in Mumbai.

The floatel will house two multi-cuisine restaurants including a club lounge equipped with a 24-hour coffee shop to give tourists luxurious hospitality on sea waters. AB Celestial will be open to public from August 15, 2014.

The cruise will also attract foreign tourists who wish to enjoy a 360-degree view of Mumbai and also give them an opportunity to observe the city’s most iconic structures, the Bandra-Worli Sea Link closely.

Festivals

Rath Yatra – The exuberant 12 day Rath Yatra festival sees Lord Jagannath (a reincarnation of Lords Vishnu), along with his elder brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra step out of their divine abode in Puri’s Jagannath Temple. During this procession, the Gods are transported in a grand chariot ceremony called Ratha Yatra. The majestic chariots bear the deities and are pulled by devotees as a part of the celebrations. The festival will be taking place during the week of June 29-July 7, 2014.

Hemis Festival – The two-day Hemis Festival celebrates the birth of Guru Padmasambhava, the founder of Tantric Buddhism in Tibet. He is believed to have transported the Buddhist beliefs and philosophies to Tibet. This festival is celebrated with great gusto in Ladakh, particularly in Leh’s Hemis Gompa. The monks perform colorful masked dances on traditional music that symbolize the victory of good over evil. The fair also attracts the attention of shoppers for its striking handicrafts on display. This year, the festival will be celebrated during July 7-8, 2014.

Guru Poornima – India is the country where the Gurus or teachers are revered at par with god. Guru Poornima, the occasion dedicated to the teachers is celebrated to recognize their selfless contribution in shaping their student’s personality. With great humility and gratitude, the students or Shishyas visit their teachers during this festival and regard them for the enlightening guidance and spiritual lessons. This traditional festival will be celebrated on July 12, 2014.

Champakulam Boat Race – The Champakulam Boat Race is the oldest snake boat race of Kerala. It also marks the beginning of the boat race season in the God’s own country. Considering its importance in the boat races of the region, the festival offers a glimpse of rich Keralan culture.

A stunning procession is the highlight of the boat race celebrations. During this, the participating teams display their decorated boats, exotic water floats and present their cultural performances. On the whole, it showcases and celebrates the life along the backwaters of Kerala. This spectacular boat race will be organized at Champakulam District, Allapuzha or Allepey on July 11, 2014.