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Karnataka to develop infrastructure to boost tourism

Bengaluru: The Karnataka government is setting up a special purpose vehicle (SPV) to develop infrastructure at tourist destinations across the state under the public-private partnership (PPP), a senior official said Wednesday.

"The state cabinet Tuesday approved the proposal of the tourism department to set up the SPV for tourism infrastructure development at an estimated cost of Rs.14,737 crore. We have identified 1,468 acres of land at tourist spots across the state for the projects under PPP," the official told IANS here.

Under the SPV, private firms selected through a bidding process will be given specified acres of land on lease to develop the infrastructure facilities and operate them around the tourist spots for attracting more tourists.

"As we want to make Karnataka a preferred destination in the country for domestic and overseas tourists, we have identified 325 tourist spots across the state for developing the infrastructure through the PPP mode," the official said.

According to a report prepared by the tourist department, the state has potential to attract a whopping Rs.73,000 crore worth investments in tourist infrastructure development over the next 10 years, generating an additional revenue of Rs.83,000 crore and employment to 43 lakh people by 2024.

"Besides developing infrastructure and connectivity, we need to build human capital with skilled manpower for catering to the growing number of tourists to the state from across the country and abroad," the official pointed out.

The Karnataka tourism vision group, under the chairmanship of former Infosys board member and Manipal Global Education chairman T.V. Mohandas Pai, has recommended a holistic approach in promoting the rich and diverse tourist spots in the state spawning heritage sites, monuments, ancient and modern temples, pilgrim towns, wildlife sanctuaries, hill stations, beaches and historic cities like Mysuru and Hampi.

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