MANGALURU: Tourism in Dakshina Kannada took a severe beating during the two month-long prohibitory orders clamped at several places in the district owing to communal unrest. Statistics show that the number of visitors to some of the popular tourist spots in the district was lower compared to previous years. Sources said that tourists, especially from outside the district avoided Mangaluru Pilikula Bilogical Park and others during last two months.
Dakshina Kannada district has been considered as one of the most communally sensitive districts. Recent murders of SDPI activist Ashraf Kalayi and RSS activist Sharath Madivala in Bantwal police station limits is a clear example for this. Followed by these two murders and few other assault and stabbing incidents, a two month-long prohibitory order was imposed throughout the district in the months of June and July. During these two months, tourists avoided visiting several key tourist places in the district.
Statistics available with the Tourism department also reveal the same. A total of 35,612 tourists had visited Pilikula Biological Park in the month of July 2016, whereas the number declined to 30,164 in July, 2017. A total of 35,029 tourists had visited in the month of August 2016, whereas it decreased to 31,237 during August 2017. As prohibitory order was in force during the rainy season of June and July, it did not affect beach tourism.
Trade took a hit : KCCI
Kanara Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Jeevan Saldanha informed that tourism development in Mangaluru has been affected due to unrest which not only affected, but also badly hit due to business activities. “A Germany-based marketing company recently approached a city based industry and evinced interest to market the machinery goods. But after came it came to know the recent incidents of violence, it skipped its plan. It may not be a single incident and there may be several such incidents. Even investors also think twice before investing here,” he said.
Temple tourism unaffected
However, the prohibitory order has not prevented devotees from visiting temples. The number of devotees who visited the famous Dharmastala Manjunatheshwara temple, Kukke Subrahmanya temple and Kateel Durgaparameshwari temple went up this year. As per the data available with tourism department, a total of 2,60,000 devotees have offered pooja at Kukke Subrahmanya temple in July 2016, which increased to 2,70,000 this year. A total 3,10,00 devotees visited in the month of August last year, whereas the number increased to 3,20,000 this August. We can also observe that over 30,000 more devotees have visited in July and August this year when compared to last year.