Karnataka to formulate new tourism policy as lakhs of people in the industry lose jobs

bidar fort karnataka

The Covid-19 pandemic has snatched away the livelihoods of 90% of those employed in the tourism sector, Karnataka Tourism minister CT Ravi said on Thursday. The minister estimated that 28-30 lakh people have lost jobs over the last five months in the industry.

They include tourist operators, taxi drivers, hotels, tourist guides and those owning petty shops among others. “These are temporary job losses. Once the industry recovers, they will be able to
secure their jobs back,” he assured.

However, the rate of revival in the tourism sector was slow, he observed. “While Jungle Lodges have seen some improvement, KSTDC and private hotels have seen only 10% improvement in their revenues.”

“We hope that the situation will improve in the coming months,” he said, adding that the estimated loss to Jungle Lodges was Rs 1.5-2 crore while that of KSTDC was Rs 3 crore. He pointed out that the tourism sector mainly depended on private players, while the government’s share of revenue in the sector was a small percentage.

He said the state government is in the process of developing a new tourism policy, with an ambition of increasing the number of tourists in the state by four times in the coming years. The draft of the new policy will be tabled in the next Assembly session for approval, the minister said.