Pokhara upbeat Indian President’s visit will boost tourism

(Basudev Poudel)

Pokhara, Nov 3: Pokhara, which welcomed SAARC member-countries’ delegates for the Mini SAARC Summit and British Prince Henry Charles David ‘Harry’ in a separate visit in March this year, is upbeat about the visit of Indian President Pranab Mukherjee.
Indian President Mukherjee, who arrived in Nepal on Wednesday noon for a three-day state visit at the friendly invitation of President Bidya Devi Bhandari, is scheduled to visit Pokhara on November 4.
The state-visit of 81-year-old Indian President to Nepal marks the first visit of any Indian Head of the State in last 18 years.
The domestic tourism entrepreneurs here are more upbeat about the visit of the Indian President hoping that the visit of the Indian President could be leverage in promotion of tourism in one of the prime tourist hub of the country.
The visit of Indian President to Pokhara, which has already hosted several international eminent personalities, including British Prince Charles, Japanese Prince Akihito among others, is expected add to the significance of the place, argues Western Region Administrator Khagaraj Baral. “Inclusion of Pokhara in the itinerary of the visiting Indian President amounts to a huge opportunity for Pokhara,” said Regional Administrator Baral. All the preparations in this connection have been completed, according to him.
Pokhara Tourism Council Chairperson Som Thapa shares similar opinion with Regional Administrator. He stated that the Indian President’s visit to Pokhara would help Pokhara enjoy exposure among the international media too.
The visit would help prove that Pokhara is the must-see place in Nepal for the dignitaries visiting Nepal, opines Thapa.
Likewise, Western Region Hotel Association Chairperson Bharatraj Parajuli insists that the visit of Indian President to Pokhara could be leveraged to promote tourism, particularly among the Indians, as the number of Indian tourists visiting here has waned in wake of earthquake.
The visit of 81-year-old President to Pokhara, one of the major tourist destinations gifted with extra-ordinary natural beauty would draw the attention of global media that eventually help promote Nepal and boost tourism at international level, he said.
In view of Pokhara’s social worker and entrepreneur Ganesh Bahadur Shrestha, the Indian President’s visit to his town would help enhance its image taking it to a new height. The Pokhareli folks are eagerly waiting to welcome the Indian President to their town as they take it as their opportunity, said Shrestha who is also the coordinator of the Welcome Programme Management Sub Committee. RSS

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