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AP: State showcases tourism potential

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The policy aims at promoting heritage tourism, consolidating pilgrim tourism, leisure and eco-tourism and drawing upon the availability of Buddhist sites.

NEW DELHI, April 24

NOT to be left behind in the race for tourists, the Andhra Pradesh Government unveiled its strategies for attracting tourists as well travel and tourism industry at a `Tourism meet of Andhra Pradesh' held here on Wednesday.

"Taking Andhra Pradesh to the world and bringing the world to Andhra Pradesh is the sum and substance of the new tourism policy of the State. Besides, the Vision 2020 document has given high priority to tourism development as it recognises this sphere of activity as a growth engine,'' Mr C. Anjaneya Reddy, Chairman & Managing Director, AP Tourism Development Corporation (APTDC), said.

The policy aims at promoting heritage tourism, consolidating pilgrim tourism, leisure and eco-tourism and drawing upon the availability of Buddhist sites. "Apart from focusing on Hyderabad and Visakhapatnam as major tourist destinations, other areas of the State such as Vijayawada, Tirupati, Warangal, Srisailam and Nagarjunasagar are focused for development,'' Ms Chandana Khan, Secretary, Tourism and Culture, Government of Andhra Pradesh, said.

Talking about private partnership in the sector, the Secretary said that the private enterprise had, so far, invested to the tune of Rs 225 crore in and around Hyderabad and was involved in joint ventures with APTDC, with an additional commitment of Rs 250 crore.

Further, the State Government had identified 50 projects for private participation, with an investment of Rs 800 crore and so far, projects worth Rs 375 crore had been implemented.

Disclosing the new schemes and projects taken up, Mr Reddy said that "a number of new projects have been taken up and are in various stages of implementation. Among these a major project is the visitors' zone at Tirupati. It consists of a three-screen multiplex theatre of 1,000 seat capacity with an investment of Rs 600 lakh, aerial ropeway between Tirupati and Tirumala at an investment of Rs 9,100 lakh, one star/Janata hotel for Rs 1,200 lakh, religious theme park Rs 2,000 lakh, water and amusement park for Rs 1,000 lakh, highway plaza consisting of a petrol station, snack bar, drivers' rest room etc for Rs 200 lakh and other amenities.

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