Recognising the potential of rural tourism in the country, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, has identified Rural Circuit as one of fifteen thematic circuits identified for development under Swadesh Darshan scheme. The ministry has launched Swadesh Darshan scheme for integrated development of theme-based tourist circuits for development of tourism infrastructure including last mile connectivity in the country, Minister of State for Tourism & Culture, Prahlad Singh Patel said in a written reply in Rajya Sabha Tuesday.
Ministry of Rural Development provides a list of leading sub districts to each state for selection of non-tribal clusters under Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission (SPMRM), within which the clusters could be identified. One of the parameters in the selection of these sub districts by the Ministry of Rural Development is presence of places of tourism and pilgrimage significance, the minister further said.
Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission, under Ministry of Rural Development is a programme focused on integrated development of rural clusters by stimulating local economic development, enhancing basic services, and creating well planned Rurban clusters.SPMRM follows the vision of “Development of a cluster of villages that preserve and nurture the essence of rural community life with focus on equity and inclusiveness without compromising with the facilities perceived to be essentially urban in nature, thus creating a cluster of “Rurban villages”. Under SPMRM, 300 clusters are being developed across 28 states and six union territories. Tourism is one of the themes of Rurban cluster development, the minister informed the upper house of the Parliament.
Village tourism related activities and projects are among the 21 component categories under SPMRM under which suitable works are undertaken in clusters with tourism potential. Under SPMRM, there are 105 clusters in 30 states and UTs where tourism related activities have been proposed, he added.
For the promotion of rural tourism in the country, Ministry of Tourism undertakes several promotional activities in the domestic and international markets. As part of its marketing and promotional activities, the ministry produces publicity material and collaterals in important and potential markets under the “Incredible India” brand-line. Promotions are also undertaken through the website and social media accounts of the ministry.
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