CHENNAI: Chola bronze sculptures alone attract over one lakh visitors to Tamil Nadu every year, said KK Pandiarajan, Minister for Tamil Official Language and Tamil Culture, on Thursday. Speaking after inaugurating the Association of Domestic Tour Operators of India, Tamil Nadu branch, Pandiarajan said, “Tamil Nadu is a leader of the tourism industry. Out of 1.6 crore foreign tourists’ arrival into India, roughly around 80% land in Tamil Nadu first.”
Stating that the tourism industry gives 4.27 crores of jobs, the minister said, India’s earnings from tourism is Rs 16.9 lakh crore, roughly about 9.2% GDP. ”Tourism is the second largest industry in India,” Pandiarajan added. The minister also urged tour operators to come forward with new business models, look at new venture capital and also focus on value addition.
V Irai Anbu, Additional Chief Secretary, said there are various tourists spots in Tamil Nadu. Chennai, the East Coast Corridor, has archeological sites, temples, boating, and others. Also, there are 34,000 temples in the State.”Business tourism is also picking up here. The State is also known for medical tourism as there are a large number of hospitals,” Irai Anbu added.