Kidnappings hit foreign tourists influx in Odisha

The Odisha government has admitted that the inflow of foreign tourists has fallen drastically since the kidnapping of two Italians by the Maoists in troubled Kandhamal district in March this year.

The stakeholders in the tourism industry including hoteliers and tour operators have already drawn the attention of the government towards the problem and sought urgent steps to improve the situation.

“The visits of the foreign tourists to the state have fallen considerably since the kidnapping incident. The matter was raised at a high-level meeting recently here between state Tourism Minister Maheswar Mohanty and representatives of government and private agencies involved in the tourism sector,” a senior government official said on Monday.

According to the government figures, 47,105 foreign tourists had visited the state in 2009-10. The number had increased to 60,722 in 2011-12. However, since March this year, the visit of tourists from abroad has come down to almost nil. 

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