With the revival of boat riding in Thotapalli reservoir on Thursday, tourism received a major boost. Boat riding in the project waters was suspended for the past few months to the disenchantment of tourist lovers.

ITDA had introduced two boats to provide succour to 116 tribal families of Gadaba who were displaced by the reservoir project in Parvatipuram division.

Union Minister for Panchayat Raj and Tribal Affairs V. Kishore Chandra Deo inaugurated the boat ride in March last year. Both the boats needed repairs and the project remained defunct for some time. However, ITDA Project Officer Rajatkumar Saini took the initiative and made the mechanised luxury boat operational on the Children’s Day.

P. Kiran Kumar, official from Fisheries Department, who is coordinating the tourism project, said the second boat would be made operational shortly. He said Rs. 40 for adults and Rs. 20 for children below 12 years of age was being charged for a 20-minute ride in the project waters. Keeping the picnic month in view, Mr. Kumar said Rs. 1500 would be charged for groups wish to enjoy boat ride for one hour. The capacity of the boat is 18. Likewise, there is package tour that includes transport from Parvatipuram town to the spot and snacks for Rs. 3,500 to picnickers.

He said all the 116 families of Gadaba formed a society and they received Rs. 45 lakh from A.P. Scheduled Tribes Cooperative Finance Corporation Limited with the intention to provide them employment.

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