BHUBANESWAR: Baijayant Panda, BJD MP from Kendrapara, has demanded that the Centre should expedite the development and promotion of tourist circuits in Odisha.
In a letter to Union Tourism Minister Shripad Yesso Naik, Panda said though in the 2014-15 Budget the Centre laid thrust on many tourism projects across the country, Odisha which has many historical and religious sites does not figure prominently in the proposals.
The BJD MP said the tourism potential of Bhitarkanika and Gahirmatha Wildlife Sanctuaries and the Buddhist circuit of Ratnagiri-Udaygiri-Lalitgiri in Kendrapara Lok Sabha constituency has remained unutilised. Problems also plague other tourist destinations in Odisha including Atari, Taptapani and Similipal National Park, he said.
As the Planning Commission ranks the tourism industry as the second largest in providing employment to semi-skilled and unskilled workers, promotion of tourism in Odisha will facilitate increased economic opportunities for its people, he said.