Karnataka

Cauvery row: Tourism takes a hit

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Popular destinations in Mysuru deserted following a sharp drop in tourist arrivals

Tourist arrivals to Mysuru have dropped largely following protests over the release of Cauvery waters to Tamil Nadu rocking the region.

Major tourism destinations here such as Mysuru palace and the zoo, have reported sparse tourist footfall.

Another major reason for tourism taking a severe beating is Mysuru–Bengaluru National Highway, the key transit route, remaining out of bounds for motorists following roadblocks along the corridor.

Tourist arrivals during weekend were usually more, but many have cancelled their bookings in view of Karnataka bandh on Friday over the Cauvery issue. Weekend travellers usually arrive on Friday and stay overnight to get going with their travel plan for the next two days.

Mysuru Travel Mart president B.S. Prashanth told The Hindu that many bookings — hotel and taxis — had been cancelled by tourists following volatile situation over the Cauvery issue.

“We have no option but to fully refund the booking amount. Even bookings for weekend to Kodagu, Ooty and Wayanad from Mysuru are also getting cancelled,” he said.

Mr. Prashanth said tourist flow may drop further if the situation continues to remain volatile in the region, with the major carriageway — Bengaluru–Mysuru National Highway — remaining inaccessible.

Mysuru zoo, which is usually bustling with tourists, has been almost deserted. Those coming from neighbouring States have opted to stay away from the city following the Cauvery row.

‘70 per cent drop in arrivals’

When contacted, Zoo Executive Director K. Kamala told The Hindu that there was a drop of about 70 per cent in the number of tourists visiting the zoo. “We are seeing a drop in arrivals since Wednesday, when the number was around 3,500 tourists, which is less compared to usual arrivals,” she felt.

Sources in the tourism industry told The Hindu that protests have also affected tourists transiting through Mysuru towards Wayanad in Kerala and Ooty in Tamil Nadu.

Tourists are also not heading to destinations such as Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary, Kokkare Bellur, Gaganachukki waterfall, Muthathi, Hemagiri, Shivanasamudra, Shimsha, Melkote, and Kerethonnur owing to roadblocks.

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Printable version | Dec 15, 2019 10:41:57 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/Cauvery-row-Tourism-takes-a-hit/article14628884.ece

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