Chiranjeevi lays stone for tourism project at Kovalam
Union Minister for Tourism K. Chiranjeevi has promised all assistance from the Centre for infrastructure facilities to make Kerala a leading tourism destination.
Laying the foundation stone for a Centrally-sponsored Rs. 9.5-crore integrated tourism development project for Kovalam on Harbour Road here on Sunday, the Union Minister praised the State for the commendable work it had done to build infrastructure facilities.
“The State should continue with the good work and we are ready to extend all support,” he added.
Mr. Chiranjeevi said better infrastructure facilities were needed to attract tourists to Kerala, which had emerged as a major destination for tourists from all over the world.
During the 12th Plan period, the State had been allocated Rs.78.26 crore for six tourism projects by the Centre in 2012. In the current fiscal year, the Union Ministry had till date provided Rs. 13.65 crore for four tourism projects submitted by the State.
Mr. Chiranjeevi said the beach resort of Kovalam would become a popular spot for water sports and surfing after the development of the Light House beach and Samudra beach. “The development works at the beach resort, which is accessible and well connected by road, rail and air, will enhance visitors’ experience,” he added.
Minister for Tourism A.P. Anil Kumar, in his address, said the State would provide a matching amount for the Centrally-sponsored project that was kicked off for the overall development of Kovalam.
The Minister said Mr. Chiranjeevi had agreed to give clearance soon for the seven tourism projects submitted by the State. Kovalam had been given top priority in the development initiatives undertaken by the department.
Union Minister of State for Human Resource Development Shashi Tharoor, who presided over the function, said the benefits of tourism should reach the locals and the community. The Union Minister said the International Container Transhipment Terminal (ICTT) at Vizhinjam would take off this year. The four-laning of NH 66 bypass from Kazhakuttom to Karode would commence soon, he added.