Day 4 of the “a Message a Day”

Subject: Day 4 of the “a Message a Day”

14th January 2016 

To All Members, 
 
Dear Members:
 
Today is Day 4 of the “a Message a Day” campaign. Details for the process are restated below. Today you need to send your 4th message to our PM. Please share this initiative with your staff, your suppliers and other partners & friends in the industry. We need to create a volume in our responses. 
 
Today’s topic for your message is – Thursday Jan 14 2016“poor infrastructure of our national monuments and guiding services in the industry” 
 
• The Ministry of Culture is proposing to increase monument entrance fees by 300% from April 1. They have ignored all please by the industry on a rational and staggered increase. We support fees, but we need to be fair to travellers.
• Also, we need to demand service form the ASI in their maintenance. It is criminal to charge high fees and provide no upgradation on services
• They claim to want to increase fee as they have not done so in the past 10 years. The fact that they didn’t is not any fault of tourists or the tourism industry. We support an increase, but at rational levels and with enough advance notice. 
• The Ministry of Culture refuses to enter a dialogue with the tourism industry, despite our being one of the most important stakeholders in the promotion of culture
• Also, Prime Minister Modi’s Clean India campaign has had no effect on our tourist sites. We need special efforts on that front. Even our most important monument, the Taj Mahal, has garbage all over the place
 
We also want to add here our issues on Guide availability – 
 
• We need to delicence the entire guide process. Free market forces must prevail. 
• The Government has created artificial imbalances by not holding course on a regular basis. Certain parts of the country are at critically low levels of having quality guides. We cannot bring in more tourists because of this
• Lack of language guides is a huge problem
• The recent guide course advertisement has unrealistic numbers. Well below the actual need. 
Please send your opinion on the matter to Mr Modi and his team.
 
The response from all of you has been fabulous. But sending us notes of congratulations is not enough. You need to write and get your staff, your partners, your suppliers to do so as well. 
 
We now have a meeting with the Minister with our active members on Thursday, but that is not enough. We must highlight the issues of the inbound tourism industry at the highest level of government and get a fair hearing for our industry. 
• To write to Prime Minister Modi, please go to http://pmindia.gov.in/en/interact-with-honble-pm/ 
• Select “Write to the Prime Minister”
• In the field of Grievance Category, please select “Other Central Government Related”
• If you want, you can in addition write to the below powerful ministers- 
• Nirmala Sitharaman – Minister of Commerce & Industry - nsitharaman@nic.in
• Arun Jaitely, Minister of Finance – ajaitley@sansad.nic.in 
• Rajnath Singh, Home Minister - 38ashokroad@gmail.com  
 
We will also be taking this messaging to the mainstream media. We want to spread the news that we are desperate and we need immediate action on the ground otherwise the clock would have ticked too far to be turned back for some of us. If you have any contacts in the media, please share the information with them and connect them to us. We can give them a full brief on our campaign. 
 
Every mail must end with the following “Sir, the inbound tourism industry of India needs an appointment with you. Tourism is your passion and we need help before it is too late!”
 
Please reach out to your IATO office bearers if you have any questions or additional thoughts. We need to be together as one voice to win this battle.
 
Regards,

Gour Kanjilal
Executive Director