Kerala

Maoist threats affect tourism prospects

: The recurring attacks on hotels and resorts by suspected Maoists have hit the prospects of the tourism industry in Wayanad district.

The latest in the series of attacks was on the Tamarind Easy Hotel of the Kerala Tourism Development Corporation at Thirunelly on Sunday.

Antisocial elements had attacked a private tourism resort adjacent to the hotel nearly a month ago. A forest outpost at Kunhome had been vandalised a few days ago.

Normally, foreign tourists visit the district between mid-December and March-end, but tourist arrivals this time round have fallen by nearly 30 to 35 per cent, says K.R. Vancheeswaran, member of the executive committee of the Wayanad Tourism Organisation. Cancellation of bookings has also increased considerably, he says.

Though the Maoist threat is yet to seriously affect domestic tourist arrivals, it may have an impact on the industry if the government fails to address the issue effectively, says C.P. Shylesh, a member of the organisation.

Around 450 resorts

There are close to 450 tourist resorts, including home-stays, in the district.

“We feel insecure as resorts and hotels are easy prey for the so-called Maoists,” says K.P. Jagadheesh, a worker at the Tamarind hotel.

Mr. Jagadheesh says though they had asked the management to strengthen security at the hotel after an adjacent private resort was attacked, the management is yet to take any positive measure.

District Police Chief Putta Vimaladitya says the police have confirmation that a Maoist group was involved in the attacks, but they still have to identify the group. ‘‘However, the department is responding to the situation in a professional manner and we are trying to find out their whereabouts,” Mr. Vimaladitya said.

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Printable version | Sep 26, 2020 9:43:00 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/maoist-threats-affect-tourism-prospects/article6822977.ece

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