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Indonesia and India attempt to boost their tourism relations

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India and Indonesia have a long history of cultural exchange and trade, but the two-millennia-long relationship has not necessarily translated into an intimate exchange of inbound tourists. With this fact in mind, the two countries have agreed to explore together the huge potential for tourism between India and Indonesia.

Indian Deputy Ambassador to Indonesia Manish said just a small fraction of Indonesian travelers visited India last year, and Ni Wayan Giri Adnyani, the deputy secretary for overseas tourism development at the Tourism Ministry, acknowledged Manish’€™s assertion.

With this reality, the two countries have come together to boost relations. India and Indonesia plan to simplify visa procedures, boost marketing activities and develop direct flights connecting the two countries.

Manish said that there was no specific target but the embassy would focus on attracting more Indonesian tourists, while Ni Wayan said that her ministry aimed to see a 30 percent increase in Indian travelers visiting Indonesia this year.

There were around 8 million foreign tourist arrivals in India last year, and Indonesian tourists made up a small fragment of them, with only around 23,000 arrivals, Manish said.

‘€œWe see Indian culture in every corner of Indonesia. But not many Indonesians travel to India,’€ Manish said during the promotional event Incredible India held in Jakarta recently.

India has introduced an online visa system so that interested visitors did not need to travel to Indian consulates to acquire one. In the case of Indonesia, travelers interested in visiting India have to go to Jakarta, Medan and Bali to get their visas.

India also recently introduced a 24-hour helpline to guide tourists and help in cases of emergency. The service is available in 12 languages.

Indonesia ‘€” meanwhile ‘€” scrapped the tourist visa for 90 countries last year, including for India, and Ni Wayan said that this would help attract more Indian tourists.

She said that around 270,000 Indian tourists visited Indonesia last year out of a total figure of 9 million foreign arrivals. The figure is a relatively small one considering the fact that Indians made 18 million overseas trips during 2015.

This year, she added, her ministry aimed to attract 350,000 tourists from the South Asian country.

‘€œWe have actively and aggressively conducted exhibitions to attract more tourists from India, not only from New Delhi and Mumbai, but also from other cities like Hyderabad, Calcutta and Chennai,’€ she said.

She said that a larger budget had been set aside for marketing efforts in India. However, she did not have the details at hand.

Ni Wayan also advocated reactivating bilateral working meetings between her ministry and its Indian counterpart in order to work more closely on promoting tourism between India and Indonesia.

Credits:www.thejakartapost.com

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    Indians can take the Delhi Singapore Surabaya route into Indonesia. Lovely city Surabaya.

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Actress Richa Chadha Extends her Support to Pride Month

Richa was also recently chosen as the face face by Humsafar Trust, an NGO for the LGBTQ community

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Richa Chadha
Richa Chadha. Wikimedia Commons

Actress Richa Chadha has become a part of a special promotional initiative of the US Consulate here to extend support for the Pride Month in India.

A post on the official Instagram account of the US Consulate General in Mumbai, shows Richa posing in a bright yellow ensemble and making a heart gesture with her hands.

Alongside that is a post which reads: “It’s 2019! Obsolete ideas of morality, misinformation about LGBTQIA+ must go. By repealing Section 377, India has joined the ranks of other progressive nations in the world. For the common man, there’s now a growing understanding that being LGBTQIA+ is normal. But repealing the law on paper and having greater acceptability as an LGBTQIA+ in society are very different things.

Richa
Richa Chadha at an event. IANS

“We need to work tirelessly to remove ignorance, misinformation and stigma attached to the community and its choices. Life must be made easier. An open and welcoming approach to the LGBTQIA+ must percolate down to the tier two cities and villages in India, and not stay restricted to the cosmopolitans.”

The actress added: “As a society, we must become more inclusive and aware about all genders and their needs. The role of LGBTQIA allies is crucial in this regard, as we can help bring issues of stereotyping and harassment to the notice of people and popular media. We should team up with artists who fight for freedom of expression, against censorship, and also join hands with those fighting for marginalised groups.”

Also Read- Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Form Committee on ‘One Nation, One Election’

Richa was also recently chosen as the face face by Humsafar Trust, an NGO for the LGBTQ community, to inaugurate India’s first ever holistic medical centre for the people of the community to help them break away from stigmas of general discrimination they may face. (IANS)