Tourism Dept to get own office

Year-long wait could end soon with new building in City

Tourism Dept to get own office

The Deputy Commissioner has agreed to grant the Department land beside the sanitorium for construction of its own building. Senior officers in the Department have also been informed of this provision. The Deputy Director will function from the Department’s own office from next year- if all goes well.

Present condition

For more than five years, the Department has been working from a building with just two rooms and one washroom. The demolition of the house adjacent to the office building has destroyed whatever little acceptable appearance the building had. It has turned into an inconspicuous little building, rather than standing out as a government office that people can recognise easily.

The Department has an office in bad shape. Also, it is not easily accessible for travellers from distant places. Therefore, the Deputy Director had written a letter to the Deputy Commissioner two years ago itself, requesting permission to shift the office to a better, well-equipped building. There was no response to the letter.

Now, however, the Department is being granted land for a building of its own. If this truly takes place, the Tourism Department will become one of the few Departments in the district functioning from their own buildings.

Another problem for government departments is the reluctance of owners to rent them their buildings. Interestingly, many owners cite irregular payment of rent as the reason for their reluctance.

Lack of facilities

The Tourism Department too faces this problem. In the present office, other than the Deputy Director, there are one first grade assistant and one fourth grade worker. The office lacks proper covers for the windows and has to use curtains. “We are trying to work to the best of our ability even in the midst of lack of basic facility,” says Deputy Director Srinivasmurthy.

Speaking to the Deccan Herald recently, he said the offices at Kolar, Tumkur and Mandya are in direct contact with the Bangalore office. Salary, funds for developmental work and other such provisions are to be got from Bangalore itself, he added.

Activities so far

The Tourism Department has provided drinking water and constructed toilets at Antargange shrine in the City. There are discussions carried on regarding the construction of the guest house at an expenditure of Rs 50 lakh, to be built near the Virupaksha Temple in Mulbagal. The Deputy Commissioner has been formally requested to hand over the responsibility to the PWD.

Construction of a guest house at Bangara Thirupati has also been proposed, the Deputy Director said.

The Tourism Department entered into an agreement with the Dr Thimmayya Academy of Adventure, Kolar Gold Fields, four months ago. The Department will select people who are trained in the Academy in mountaneering, rock-climbing and other eco-tourism related activities. Such people will be appointed official trainers, he added.

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