Monday, July 11, 2005

Cosmic air Flies to Kolkata, India

NTB Media Center

A Tour Operators Meet was organized at the office of Royal Nepalese Consulate General, Kolkata, India on July 9, 2005 to apprise the leaders of tourism industry about the operation of Cosmic Air and the present situation of Nepalese tourism.

Addressing the function attended by tour operators of Kolkata, Hon’ble Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Mr. Buddhiraj Bajracharya said, ”Launching of Cosmic Air’s flight to Kolkata has strengthened the relationship between the people of Kolkata and Nepal. Although Kolkata has been connected by Indian Airlines for years, the flight of Cosmic Air will definitely make it easier for the people of both cities to travel Kathmandu and Kolkata. Visa free entry in both the country by their respective citizens, convertibility and acceptability of currency, food habits, language, religious faith and spiritual values are few common areas where India and Nepal have been benefiting down the ages. What I promised at BIMSTEC meeting a few months ago, I fulfilled my words by bring by bringing Cosmic Air to Kolkata boarding myself on it. I do hope this flight will continue to provide service to the passengers for a long time.”

In the programme Royal Nepalese Consul General Dr. Govind Prasad Kusum said,” Cosmic Air has made it cheaper to travel to Kathmandu by air than by three tier AC Railway.” He further said that there was no problem in traveling to Nepal at present. Director General of Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal Rajesh Raj Dali said the airlines operation in Nepal is necessity rather than luxury because of its topography. “Cosmic Air provides the best connectivity in Nepal and outside.” Managing Director of Cosmic Air M.B. Mathema highlighted about the operation of Cosmic Air and its history.

Manoj Saraf, Managing Director of Gainwell Travel said,” Although Cosmic Air’s ticket is cheap, the airport and other taxes becomes hindrance for travelers to travel to Nepal because it comes around Indian currency Rs. 2000.” Tour operators also said that the government of Nepal and India should accept the identification provided by tax offices. Royal Nepalese Consulate General also distributed the form to be filled up by the students and endorsed by the school authority while traveling to Nepal by air with their parents.

Mr. Sarad Pradhan, Media Consultant of Nepal Tourism Board spoke about the present scenario of Nepalese tourism. “Cosmic Air’s flight to Kolkata and Vanarasi will definitely give extra mileage to Nepalese tourism,” he said.

Nepal Tourism Board also distributed promotional materials to the tour operators.

(As reported by Mr. Sarad Pradhan, Media Consultant, NTB)

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  2. The Indian hospitality industry has seen a major hike in the recent times owing to the astounding industrial growth of the country. The growth in the IT sector has also hugely led to the revolving fortunes of the metros and major cities of the country. Offshore business flowing in and the eagerness of the MNCs to come up in India has led to the obvious growth of the hospitality sector also. Most of the big names in the hospitality industry from India and abroad have their properties in the important commercial hubs of the country. However, surprisingly, the hospitality industry is not that vigorously promoted in one of the most important metros of the country, Kolkata. In the past decade Kolkata has also seen major industrial growth. But unfortunately, the West Bengal state Government hasn’t shown much inclination towards the development of the hospitality industry of the state in general and the hotels in Kolkata in particular. Inspite of the repeated appeals from the Hotel and Restaurant Association of Eastern India, the state government hasn’t come up with steps that would boost the growth of the hospitality industry. Most of the suggestions and appeals made by the Association have gone unheeded. On the contrary, the state government increased the luxury tax payable by the air conditioned budget hotels in Kolkata and the ones in the rest of the state by a whopping 650%. Change in excise duties, reduction in the bar license renewal fee etc have also not been worked upon. In one word, the government seems to be underestimating the need to strengthen and boost the hospitality industry in the wake of unprecedented industrial growth. With proper etching out of the taxes and fees payable by the hotels of the state, the state government can make the business hotels in Kolkata and other renowned hotels of the state bring in huge profits for the state.

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