The Minister of State for Tourism, Indian Government, Mr K J Alphons has announced revised guidelines for Adventure Tourism in India. To promote adventure sports in India, Adventure Tour Operators Association of India (ATOAI) in association with tourist departments devised these changes in the safety and quality regulations practiced in the adventure tourism sector.
India has immense potential for adventure tourism, ranging from the Himalayas to beyond the coastal regions of the country. The 170-page document covers guidelines on 15 land-based, 7 air-based and 7 water-based activities. These activities include mountaineering, trekking, bungee jumping, paragliding, kayaking, scuba diving, snorkeling, river rafting and many other sports.
Formulated to promote adventure tourism, these guidelines will help with facilities to be developed to global standards. Further, these revised rules will extend support to all stakeholders for developing this niche sector and tap the whole potential offered in India.
There is detailed focus on safety from every possible angle. The guidelines aim to further educate tour operators and other concerned agencies related to adventure tourism in India.
Safety in adventure tourism is the foremost agenda in all of the guidelines. Even the vigilance and strict adherence to these guidelines are of foremost attention for the industry’s healthy growth. The document lists all SOPs (standard operating procedure) have been issued for age limit for every sport, training, proper equipments, emergency rescues, trained manpower, use of sign boards, inspections, flying permissions, risk management strategy, and maintenance among others. Insurance liabilities, death and disabilities are also covered in the details of the guidelines.
Further, the document also has complete information on the basic minimum standards for grant of government recognition to adventure sports operators in India. These requisites include mandatory registration with the local tourism department, regular training of staff, minimum qualification for staff, and a ‘leave no trace’ policy to conform to high sustainability standards aimed to expand adventure tourism in India.
The Indian adventure tourism industry, as of now has crossed 430-billion dollar in revenue and growth at a rate of 46 per cent per annum. Experts’ studies reveal that in the next 10 years, the industry will have crossed the one trillion mark.
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