Hoteliers seek clearance of dues from govt. agencies

The hotel industry in Mysuru, which had suffered a huge hit due to COVID-19 pandemic, has sought the clearance of long-pending dues from the district administration and other government agencies.

The Mysuru district administration, Mysuru City Corporation (MCC) and Department of Youth Affairs and Sports (DYES) had not cleared their dues towards lodging and catering amounting to more than ₹50 lakh that were pending for three to four years, said Mysuru Hotel Owners Association President Narayana Gowda.

The bills pertaining to rooms booked by the district administration during the Kannada Sahitya Sammelan in 2017 and during Dasara of 2019 were still pending. The MCC is yet to pay the bill for catering of food to its election branch. The DYES, which has paid a portion of the pending amount towards rooms booked by the Department, also needs to clear its dues, Mr. Gowda said.

While representations to clear the dues have already been submitted to the Mayor of MCC and officials of DYES, Mr. Gowda said the Association representatives were planning to meet Deputy Commissioner Bagadi Gautham shortly and submit an appeal for early clearance of dues to the hoteliers.

The district administration, however, has not sought rooms for the last two Dasara festivals held in 2020 and 2021 as the government decided to keep the celebrations low-key. “If they had sought rooms this year, we would have put a condition that our dues should be cleared”, Mr. Gowda added.

Though the hotel industry was virtually strangulated by the COVID-19 pandemic, with little or no revenue, the recently-concluded Dasara festivities brought smiles on the faces of the hotel and restaurant owners due to a substantial rise in tourists.

Right from the start of Dasara on October 7 to October 13, the occupancy rate ranged from 50 per cent to 60 per cent with tourists booking accommodation in advance. The occupancy rate between October 14 and October 17 jumped to 90 per cent. Though the inquiry for booking after October 18 remained reasonably good, the occupancy rate was around 50 per cent between October 18 and October 24, said Mr. Gowda.

When Ahara Mela or food festival was an integral part of the Dasara festivities in earlier years, the restaurants were reporting a good business only on the last two days of the festival – Ayudha Pooja and Vijayadashami. With no food festival in this year’s “low-key” Dasara, restaurants, sweet shops and bakeries reported a good footfall, he added.

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Printable version | Dec 8, 2021 2:55:03 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/hoteliers-seek-clearance-of-dues-from-govt-agencies/article37144431.ece

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