RAYAGADA: A committee headed by the Home Secretary has recently held a meeting with the stakeholders and officials of Tourism Department to prepare new guidelines on tribal tourism in Odisha, said Tourism Minister, Ashok Panda. “As international visitors are attracted to the State for adventure and tribal tourism, allowing them to reside in tribal areas would give a fillip to the sector,” said the Minister, who was here to review tourism activities in the district on Tuesday.
Educated and trained tribal youths will be engaged as guides for international tourists very soon, he added. Panda directed the Collector Jagannath Mohanty to form block development committees to look after the ongoing construction of Public Convenience Centres and Tribal Interpretation Centres at Chatikona in Bissamcuttack block, Devagiri hill in Kalyansinghpur block and Paikapada temple under Kolnara block in the district.
The State Government had imposed restrictions on tribal tourism in 2012 when two Italians were kidnapped by Maoists and allegations of ‘human safari’ came to fore.
Last month, Government had constituted a committee to look into relaxing the restrictions on tribal tourism in the State that is home to 62 tribal communities including 13 Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups.
The committee would give its recommendations to the State Government following which, the guidelines for tribal tourism would be issued by the Tourism Department.