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MoT expedites setting up infoline

To further strengthen India’s image as a safe destination, the Ministry of Tourism (MoT) is aggressively working on setting up a multi-lingual toll-free helpline. The helpline will be accessible from anywhere across India. “The project is already sanctioned by the Tourism Minister. We have been given one year time to complete the project. However, the way ministry is working on this project, it may get completed before that period lapses,” Parvez Dewan, Tourism Secretary, Govt. of India said while addressing the PATA India Chapter.

Divulging more information on the project, Dewan informed that the Ministry is working in close collaboration with the private industry to devise a curriculum for the helpline. He preferred to call it ‘information line’ rather than ‘helpline’. “The information line will be in French, German, Spanish, Korean and Italian besides Hindi, English and Arabic. The infoline will be an 1800 number that will be accessible from anywhere in India,” he said and added that the ministry has decided to have two languages – Mandarin and Cantonese – to cater to the Chinese market.

“It will be a 24 hour infoline and will have numbers for police stations, women helplines, hospitals, registered travel agents and tour operators and registered hotels. Moreover, the infoline will also provide quick solutions for general problems. Every person manning the infoline will be provided a laptop and internet connectivity to provide real time information to tourists,” he informed.

Anand Kumar, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, Govt of India, highlighted the basic features of recently launched Take –II of Incredible India campaign - the ‘Find What You Seek’ campaign directed at international tourists, and the ‘Go Beyond’ campaign steered toward the domestic market. “So far we had been promoting India internationally from the point of view of the destinations. The Incredible India campaign launched in 2002 has been extremely successful. In our ‘Take II’ of the Incredible India campaign, we are going to focus on the consumer,” he informed.

The aim of the ‘Go Beyond’ campaign is to highlight places in India that are not as well known to both domestic and international tourists.

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