records 183 pc jump in profits
DELHI, July 6: Mrs Ambika Soni's taking over as the Union
Tourism Minister early this year has brought good luck to
the Indian Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC). With
the disinvestment a passé with the new Congress-led
UPA Government, the Minister has been taking active interest
in revival of the ITDC.
result, the Public sector undertaking's overall profits
in the first quarter of 2006-07 have shot up by whopping
183 per cent as compared to the corresponding period last
year. The corporation not only offset a loss of Rs 4.83
crore but also achieved a profit of Rs 3.66 crore in the
first quarter of this year; thus showing a rise in profits
by Rs 8.04 crore.
Hotels Division, a major activity of the Corporation, registered
a hike in profit of 296 per cent compared to the first quarter
of 2005-06. It recovered from a net loss of Rs 1.26 crore
in the first quarter of previous fiscal to register a net
profit of Rs 2.49 crore in the quarter under review, thus
making a net profit of Rs 3.77 crore.
quarter, the ITDC's Duty Free business recorded a net profit
rise of 139 per cent as compared to last year. It reported
a net profit of Rs 1.05 crore in the quarter as compared
to a net loss of Rs 2.68 crore a year ago, thus making a
net profit of Rs 3.75 crore.
corporation is planning to revamp the image of its hotels
division and has taken new initiatives ranging from free
internet access in its hotels to renting laptops, gowns
for lawyers and medical tests at unbelievable low prices
to increase its business.
would go for a major image change and would enhance its
bouquet of services. The new services are in line with the
corporation's strategy to capture a major chunk of the 2010
Commonwealth Games business," according to an ITDC
in mind the growing medical tourism in the country, ITDC
has tied-up with various pathological labs to collect test
samples of guests from its hotels. The lab reports of these
tests would then be put on intranet for the guest by evening
and reports delivered by next day. "We will charge
a nominal fee from the guest for this additional service
and are amongst the first in the world to extend such a
unique facility to our guests," the spokesperson said.
DTDC to ensure alternative accommodation for C'wealth Games
DELHI, July 3: IATO and Delhi Tourism development Corporation
(DTDC) will explore the possibility of working together
for regularization of guest houses in the unrecognized sector
in Delhi and also implement the home stay scheme to meet
acute shortage of accommodation for the visitors during
the forthcoming Commonwealth Games.
Sanat Kaul, Chairman and Managing Director of DTDC welcomed
the suggestion of working together to provide alternative
accommodation to the visiting guests made by the IATO President,
Mr. Subhash Goyal, in his welcome address at a recent meeting.
Goyal asserted that it would indeed be a "miracle"
if the Government or private entrepreneurs were able to
construct some 70 to 80 hotels in the three and four star
category in the short period left for the games. The only
pragmatic alternative, he said, was to regularize guest
houses whose number is as high as 15,000 in the capital
and also implement the home stay scheme supported by IATO.
however, made it clear that IATO could recommend only those
guest houses which had the government's seal of approval
so that its image is not tarnished by some unscrupulous
elements engaged in this business.
Sanat Kaul said that it would be his endeavour to not only
improve the ambience and quality of life in Delhi but to
ensure that it no more remains a transit point but gets
the status of a tourist destination.
Ashwani Lohani, Chairman and Managing Director, Madhya Pradesh
State Tourism Development Corporation, who was also among
the guest speakers, made an excellent presentation on the
rich cultural heritage of Madhya Pradesh and some of its
admitted at the outset that his state could not compete
successfully with states like Kerala, Goa and Jammu &
Kashmir in terms of tourism but asserted it had all the
potential to become number one state. He also disclosed
that a comprehensive tourism policy of the state Government
would be soon announced. The state he said was engaged in
improving infrastructure and rationalizing taxes.
Parvez Dewan, new Chairman and Managing Director of ITDC,
disclosed that ITDC in its first quarter this year had turned
a corner by earning 183 per cent higher revenue in the first
quarter of this year as compared to the previous year when
the corporation was in the red.
also disclosed that ITDC had entered into a strategic agreement
with Escorts under which the clients at ITDC would be given
a health check-up in their own rooms for Rs. 3,000 (or USD
66 only). Besides ECG/BP tests, samples of their blood,
urine etc would be collected and the report handed over
to them within 24 hours.
Dewan said that sites were being spotted for more properties
in the capital but hinted that all of them might not be
in the public sector alone.
Mr. Ravi Kalra read out a report about the efforts being
made by IATO in respect of 90 per cent abetment of service
tax and other issues.
luxury trains in the offing
DELHI: The Railways have called for inter-state cooperation
and public-private partnership in the running of luxury
trains like 'Palace on Wheels'. The popularity of the Palace
on Wheels, run by Rajasthan Government, can be gauged from
the fact that it is fully booked until 2010.
an IATO luncheon meeting here, the Director (Tourism), IRCTC,
Mr. Rakesh Saxena, said that there was scope for running
the second 'Palace on Wheels' and other such luxury trains.
"The Railways were in touch with the state governments
and more such trains were in the offing," he added.
Mr Saxena, suggested their operation should not be confined
to one State only but extended to cover regional tourism
circuits. There could also be public-private partnership
in such ventures.
to a plea made by the IATO President, Mr Subhash Goyal,
that IATO members like (IATA Members), should also be allowed
to sell railway tickets, Mr Saxena said that his Ministry
would consider it if IATO forwarded a proposal interlaced
with "adequate safeguards".
Saxena also suggested that the Golden triangle (consisting
of Delhi-Agra-Jaipur), on which the Palace on Wheels runs,
could be extended to cover Khajarho and Varanasi which had
great tourist appeal. "This will give further boost
to tourism," he added.
Saxena also pointed out that the Railways proposed to allot
land for about 100 hotels at places of tourist and commercial
interest. Mr Goyal had earlier in his introductory remarks
pointed out the shortage of hotel rooms. Mr Saxena said
the hotels would be run by the well-known hospitality chains
and hoped that it would, to a large extent, meet the shortage
of hotel rooms in the country.
Goyal in his address also said that it was sad that the
travel and tour operators, who were mainly responsible for
the spectacular growth in the fields of aviation and tourism
with their organizations like IATO spearheading a campaign
for open sky policy and expanded infrastructure, were being
given a rough deal. He was particularly critical of the
introduction of service tax which he described as totally
unjustified and discriminatory.
senior officers from the Tourism Ministry, Mr Amitabh Kant
(Joint Secretary) and Mr Rajeev Talwar (Additional Director
General) who were the guests of honour at the meeting, fully
acknowledged the role of travel agents and tour operators
in the promotion and marketing of India abroad, and assured
IATO of their full support in backing its just demands.