Central Government looks to boost tourism in India
With the onset of a new look authority, the Central Government extended their policy of granting Visas on Arrival (VoA) to 43 countries (from the previous 12) in an attempt to increase the influx of foreigners to the country. This step will definitely increase tourism in the country.
A total of 14,083 visas were issued in December 2014, as compared to 2700 visas for the same period in 2013 – an increase of 421.6%.
Residents of these countries need not stand in long queues at the visa centres anymore. All they have to do is complete the visa application form online and pay the application fee. Once approved, the applicants will receive an email that authorizes his travel to India. The applicant can then present this authorization to the concerned officials upon arrival, who will then stamp the visa. Currently, the visitor is allowed entry into India within 30 days of approval, and can extend their tourism in the country for a maximum of 30 days.
As of January 21st 2015, as many as 41,114 Tourist Visas on Arrival have been issued, according to Minister of State for Civil Aviation, Mahesh Sharma. India has seen a 92.4% increase in arrivals in 2014, compared to the same in 2013. The maximum influx has been from the US, Russia and Republic of Korea.
This is definitely a step in the right direction, as it will only boost tourism to India which, in turn, will positively affect the Indian economy.