Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Monday in a terse message on the occasion of Goa Liberation Day said the State government will not tolerate any "nuisance" in the tourism sector and vowed to promote and become competitive in this all-important sector.
Sawant impressed upon the dire need to control the rates for tourist-related facilities from flights to taxis and hotels if Goa has to maintain its status as the number one tourist destination.
“The flight, taxi and hotel rates need to be controlled. The undue loot of tourists has to stop,” asserted CM. We will have to face the consequences if we do not streamline transport, hotels and other ailing tourist-related services and bring a change in our approach," he cautioned.
Sawant also warned that government will not tolerate high-handedness of any kind from transport service operators and other stakeholders.
BUILD A GOOD IMAGE
The CM said that Goa's image as a tourism destination should be improved. "I am also expecting that the people of Goa will also support in building a positive image of Goa. Beach, hinterland, backwater, adventure, eco, health and wellness and spiritual tourism are being promoted by the government," he said.
Proper transport facilities for tourists in Goa is another aspect the government is focusing on. We need cooperation from the taxi and tour operators of Goa, he said and added, "I would like to warn those people trying to cheat or harass tourists, this will not be tolerated at any cost by the government."
Sawant stated that in all constituencies of the State, uniform infrastructural development needs to happen and for this cited the MPLAD scheme funds to the tune of Rs 2.5 crore.
Speaking on the embarrassing land grab issue, he said, "My government will not tolerate land grab and other fraudulent activities by some anti-social elements. For this, a Special Investigation Team to identify the fraudsters has been made functional."
Meanwhile, Rohan Khaunte, Minister for Tourism, said that the Goa taxi app will be run by the operators and the government will only assist them to operate the app.
Khaunte said that taxi operators who want to work hard will benefit from this app. "Those creating nuisance or unnecessary impediments in the implementation of the app will be dealt with. We cannot afford to have a similar blunder that happened in Vasco," he added.
South Goa was supposed to receive 60 cruise ships bringing high-end tourists, but with the recent incident, things have changed a bit, Khuante said. "The embassies are calling and sharing their experiences with me. Considering all these things, I feel there has to be coordination between MPA, transport, tourism department and police for smooth functioning of cruise tourism," he added.