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  • The recent economic growth in India along with its positioning as an Outsourcing Hub, has further enhanced the country’s infrastructure along with the connectivity of India with other countries. This has led to a tremendous increase in the number of incoming international business travelers in the country.
  • Various international travel and hospitality companies such as Thomas Cook, Amadeus, Hyatt, Four Seasons, Hilton, Regent, Radisson and Holiday Inn, have acknowledged the tourism potential of the Country and already have their presence here. Besides, their presence has significantly increased the standards of services in hospitality and tourism industry.
  • India’s cost competitive health care system and skilled human resource has given impetus to the relatively new concept of medical tourism in India and is worth USD 333 million, with about 150,000 foreign patients visiting India annually.
  • Government has acknowledged the significance of tourism in the Country and the importance of public-private partnership in the growth of the same. Thus, the Ministry of Tourism has announced number of incentives and support to give a fillip to the sector.

Tourism Haven of India

  • Kanha is the largest Wildlife Sanctuary in Asia
  • Kahjuraho has some of the most famous Sculptures in the world
  • Bhimbeteka is the oldest Cave Paintings in the world
  • Sanchi houses the oldest Buddhist Stupa in the world
  • 9 national parks and 25 game sanctuaries out of which four are major tiger reserves.
  • Sacred rivers of Narmada, Tapti, Son and Kshipra have a string of religious places located on their banks.
  • Pachmarhi one of the most beautiful hill stations.
  • Tourist festivals displaying variety of folk and performing arts at Khajuraho, Orchha, Pachmarhi, Indore-Ujjain (Malwa) and Bhopal.


  • MP has a rich cultural heritage, various religious spots along with the vast forest area and other scenic places makes it an ideal tourist destination that could cater to various interests of tourists.
  • The tourism sector in MP is gradually gaining grounds and has been identified as one of the Growth Engines of MP by the State Government.
  • Heritage sites such as Sanchi Stupa and Bhimbeteka are included in Unesco’s World Heritage Sites.
  • MP’s tourism sector is dominated by the domestic tourism with approximately 8 million tourists arrival in 2005-06 and is ranked among top ten States for domestic tourist visits. The foreign tourist arrivals was relatively less amounting to mere 0.16 million.
  • However, the trend in tourism industry of the State is positive and the sector is observing year on year growth in both domestic as well as foreign tourist arrivals.
  • Pilgrim centres account for the major portion of the domestic tourist traffic whereas places such as Khajuraho, Orchha and Gwalior attract a maximum number of foreign tourists.
  • In an effort to boost tourism sector in MP, the State Government has sanctioned USD 12.2 million for development of 17 tourist spots across the State. Further, the Government is also making efforts to improve air connectivity to other states.
  • The State has taken initiatives to promote Eco & Adventure Tourism and is keen on promoting Medical/ Herbal tourism in association with private parties.

Hospitality sector

  • The State had more than 50 grade hotels and approximately 2100 hotel rooms available as on 2004 year-end.
  • Apart from this there are several hotels/ lodges/ accommodation facilities run and maintained by MP Tourism Development Corporation.
  • Since the State houses various heritage building and bungalows , several of these have been converted into Heritage hotels.
  • The Government has acknowledged the need of more 5, 4 and 3 star hotels and is inviting private players to invest in the State. Further, there are various heritage properties which government is keen on converting into Heritage Hotels with the association of private parties

The mixed bag of tourism

Tourism Destinations

Heritage Tourism

Gwalior, Orchha, Khajuraho,
Sanchi, Mandu,Datia, Burhanpur etc

Pilgrim Tourism

Ujjain, Maheshwar, Omkareshwar, Chitrakoot, Amarkantak, Sanchi, Orchha, Amarkantak etc.

Eco & Adventure Tourism

Pachmarhi, Kanha, Bandhavgarh, Panna, Satpura, Pench Valley National Parks, Tigra Lake (Gwalior), Upper Lake (Bhopal), Gandhi Sagar (Mandsaur) etc

Leisure & Business Tourism

Pachmarhi, Khajuraho, Bhopal, Gwalior, Indore, Mainpat, Tamia, Jabalpur etc.

Major Tourist Circuits

On the basis of the proximity of destinations and linkages between them, State Government has identified 4 major tourist circuits in the State:

  • Gwalior - Shivpuri - Orchha - Khajuraho
  • Indore - Ujjain - Maheshwar - Omkareshware - Mandu
  • Jabalpur - Bhedaghat - Mandla - Kanha - Bandhavgarh
  • Bhopal -Sanchi - Bhojpur - Bhimbetka - Panchmarhi

Harnessing the Benefits of Location Advantage of MP

  • MP is centrally located and is in proximity to various other states. Further the State is well-connected to other cities through road, rail and air.
  • MP is well connected with the major ports of entry in the Country with high foreign tourist inflow such as Delhi, Maharashtra, West Bengal, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka etc.
  • Bhopal (capital of MP) could reached from these places in duration of approximately 8 to 15 hours through road and rail.
  • The proposed international airport along with the improvement in the air-connectivity of the State would increase the tourist (especially foreign tourists) traffic into the State from these tourists generating points.

Other growth drivers

  • With corporates such as Genpact, Reliance Infocom, Force, Eicher etc planning to set-up their centres in MP (Bhopal), the number of business travellers is going to increase in the State.
  • The State Government’s initiatives to develop integrated infrastructure in terms of connectivity, accommodation, and focus on private investors in tourism would develop an overall infrastructure to support the tourism growth in MP.
  • Presence of Centre of Excellence such as Institute of Hotel Managemet, Bhopal and Indian Institute of Tourism and Travel Management, Gwalior, offers skilled resources in the State.

Incentives for tourism industry

  • Government land will be offered with the approval of the Empowered Committee as equity participation on behalf of the Government at current market value for setting up Joint Ventures.
  • New projects shall be exempt from Luxury Tax for ten years from the date of commencement of commercial operations.
  • New projects shall be exempt from Sales Tax for ten years from the date of commencement of commercial operations.
  • Entertainment Centres will be exempt from Entertainment Tax for ten years from the date of commencement of commercial operations.

Incentives for Eco/ Adventure Tourism

  • The vehicles mentioned in the project report submitted by interested party for transporting tourists to visit the identified location shall enjoy an exemption from transport taxes for a period of 5years.This will be considered to be a 'sunset facility‘ and it will expire automatically after 5 years.
  • To operate liquor shops in the identified location, the following concessions shall be given in FL 3 license fee:-
  • No concessions for location within a radius of 5km from the outer limit of municipal areas with population of 0.3 million & above. In areas other than above, discount on license fee ranges from 10-50% based on the category of areas.
  • The current norm of having a minimum of ten rooms for guests in a hotel and certain other conditions applicable for FL 3 license shall be relaxed.

Incentives for Heritage Tourism

  • Concessions in taxes shall be given to any heritage hotel project regardless of quantum of investment.
  • Full exemption from Luxury Tax
  • Full exemption from Entertainment Tax
  • Either 20% of total project cost or USD 44,444 which ever is less would be given as capital investment subsidy for conversion of a heritage property into a heritage hotel.
  • Interest subsidy shall be given in favour of the owner of heritage hotel for the loan obtained for the development of the heritage hotel.
  • 5% for projects upto USD 0.33 mn
  • 3% for the projects between USD 0.33 to USD 1.11 mn
  • Investments proposed for creating captive energy sources including non-conventional energy sources, sanctioned by the financial institutions as part of the overall project outlay shall be eligible for capital investment subsidy of 20%.
  • Heritage hotels established in rural areas shall get 50% exemption in stipulated license fee for F.L.-3 license for selling Indian Manufactured Foreign Liquor within their premises.
  • Full exemption in transport tax shall be given for five years to the vehicles used by the heritage hotel for providing transfer services.
  • Concession in stamp duty for purchase of land and building for development of heritage hotel would be given within the following limits.
  • 50% exemption in urban areas
  • 100% exemption in rural areas

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20 Feb 2019
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