The news of the merger of the Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam (GMVN) and Kumaon Mandal Vikas Nigam (KMVN) has come as good news for tourists from outside the State. The multiplicity of authorities used to confuse the tourists who had to run from one place to another for information about tourism and tourist destinations.
“I don’t think the employees would be affected in any way by the merger. However, now tourists would not have to run from one door to another to get the required information about tourist destinations or for information regarding religious pilgrimage. Now all the information would be available at one place and also the tourists grievances can be addressed under one roof,” a senior official of the tourism department said. For the administrative convenience, Uttarakhand is divided into two divisions namely Garhwal and Kumaon. The two bodies handled tourism separately in their respective divisions. While the GMVN largely handled religious tourism like Chardham Yatra, KMVN handled adventure tourism apart from the Kailash Mansarovar Yatra. Of the two bodies, the KMVN was aid to be financially sounder. After the merger, there would be one entity handling the whole tourism. “All the other States have only one tourism department, but Uttarakhand has two. People outside the State often could not make out what GMVN and KMVN was and whom to approach if they wished to travel in Uttarakhand. Now that confusion would be mitigated,” said the official.
The tour operators also welcomed the decision. “It would be easier for the travellers now to book hotels even in remote locations. As far as tour operators are concerned, we found GMVN very unfriendly. For example, they want huge security deposit from us and do not postpone the booking once done in case the guest fails to reach there on time due to landslide or something. We hope that with the formation of a new body, these anomalies would be done away with and we will be able to book accommodations for our clients even in the remotest location,” said Naveen Mohan, director, Shubh Yatra Holidays, Rishikesh.
Src: Daily Pioneer