• Kerala Tourism has weathered challenges would focus on touching lives P A Mohamed Riyas

    In the words of Ibn Battuta, travelling leaves you speechless and then turns you into a storyteller. His wisdom teaches us that it is travelling that keeps our innate desires alive, waking up a world of words and images within us. It's when we traverse the boundaries of our hometowns, our states and our country, that we touch the lives of people we have never met. We then realise how small the world was for us before. Mankind's wanderlust that began many centuries ago was perhaps triggered by this realisation.
    Today, as we celebrate the National Tourism Day in the midst of the pandemic's third wave, it's time to reflect on how our ways of travel has changed. Tourists now travel not for leisure alone and are keen to explore the history, culture and the food diversity of places they visit. Whether it is within our country or abroad, people are increasingly searching for an all-encompassing experience.
    The Kerala government wishes to provide new experiences and memorable hospitality to domestic and international tourists who visit the state. As tourism and its possibilities grow, the government also wants to ensure that the state and its people are benefited directly and indirectly from the sector. The various projects that are being implemented and newly proposed are all aimed at achieving this. 
    The tourism industry is facing formidable challenges and all these conversations are happening in the midst of restrictions on travel. But Kerala had been preparing to face any dire situation by adopting protocols and emergency measures in all sectors. Kerala has successfully realised the idea of vaccinated tourism centres. In the initial stage, the state came up with the slogan 'Safe Kerala, Safe Tourism' to instil confidence among travellers and tourism industry. Steps were taken to achieve cent per cent vaccination in all tourism centres in the state with the help of the health department. The project was piloted at Vythiri in Wayanad. The district also became the first in the state to reach the goal of total vaccination, a feat acclaimed nationally. The creation of a 'bio bubble' mechanism helped the state to convey the message that it was absolutely safe to visit. 'Keravan Kerala', the biodiversity circuit, the Malabar literary circuit, Agri-tourism Network and in-car dining are some of the novel products that the state government could proudly present to tourists.

    Tourism is a sector that is intrinsically linked to lives of people. It's ideal that people become stakeholders in tourism to ensure there is no disconnect. Tourism sector has a certain responsibility towards the people of the land where it is dependent on. People too have a responsibility towards tourism, which is a major contributor to the state's economy. The state government is duty bound to develop this symbiotic relationship and to ensure that tourism in Kerala would continue to flourish. Kerala Tourism takes special care to ensure that it does not deviate from this responsibility while planning new projects.
    'Keravan Kerala', a new product recently launched to promote caravan trips, reflects this philosophy. Use of caravans have opened up possibilities of travel to hitherto unexplored destinations. This would increase the availability of localised rural jobs. People can open facilities that provide local cuisine to visitors or promote traditional art forms. An increase in job opportunities would bring people closer to tourism leading to its growth, creating a win-win situation. Kerala Tourism is also aiming at developing at least one tourist destination in each local body with the help of the local self-government institutions. Steps to realise this vision would begin in 2022.
    The Agri-tourism Network envisaged by Kerala Tourism is another intervention to help tourists experience farming and allied culture in the state. Farm tourism, homestead farming and farms of model farmers would be marketed as part of the network. It is expected that it will open up new avenues for farmers to sell their produce. The Agri-tourism Network would also help the new generation to learn and experience traditional and modern methods of farming. 
    Tourism is not merely about catering to the changing interests of travellers. Attracting their attention towards the specialities of the land and its culture is also paramount. Every destination in Kerala would have something distinct to offer. The STREET project has been envisaged by Kerala Tourism to tap this potential and touch the heart of visitors.
    Our attempt is to transform the entire state into a tourism destination and thereby reserve a unique place in the world tourism map. All this is being done to ensure that no sector is left undeveloped and to create a tourism culture worthy of global emulation. The state government is giving prominence to projects that positively impact society in multiple ways, are considerate about people and would be beneficial to both tourists and citizens in the long run. Our endeavour is to create a future where everyone in the state can speak proudly to the world about their land.

  • Opportunities for educated housewives

    Free training in financial markets and Investment management by experts
    Many educated women, housewives at present, depend on the income of a single bread-earner at home. Many of them, financially average or wealthy, are capable of having a professional life and career. But they face many hassles in taking up full-time engagements because of their priority to family matters. 
    The pandemic has brought in some positive changes in society. Work-from-home (WFH) using high-end technology has become the order of the day for men and women. Educated women, fully engaged in household affairs and unable to pursue their professional aspirations, can now fulfil their dreams in the changing environment. Each of them can add value to their own family's wealth by providing a professional touch of management to their conventional savings and investment methods. What is required is a crash course on wealth management and a hand-holding by a professional organisation. 
    The Financialisation of savings in India has been visible ever since the Jan Dhan accounts have changed the way savings and investments used to be among households in India. More and more savings are getting channelised into financial assets for better risk-adjusted growth and easy liquidity. Indian financial and insurance sectors provide a wide range of investment products and risk-cover instruments for people of all incomes and risk profiles. What is required to enhance this process of financialisation of household savings is to empower members of Indian households to take prudent investment decisions based on their risk-taking abilities and financial goals. 
    Impetus Arthasutra is taking the first step in empowering educated Indian women with the investment knowledge required to make the right investment decisions for themselves. What can be a more enriching profession than an activity where you can add value to your family wealth!
    Mumbai-based Impetus Arthasutra has offered fellowship programs for management students in the wealth management domain. It has enriched hundreds of students with the hands-on experience and practical knowledge they obtained during their fellowship at Impetus Arthasutra.
    From now on, housewives also can manage their investments and surplus resources. Thus, by staying at home, a woman can achieve her dream of working while spending enough time in the family. You can assure that your family, relatives and neighbours invest in the most suitable investment options. Through that work, you gain knowledge of the financial market and become a better investment manager of your resources in future.
    This completely free-of-cost training would make them aware of the opportunities ahead of them, says Mr P R DilIp, Managing Director of Impetus Arthasutra. “Impetus has a strong talent base for delivering a resourceful training and cutting-edge infrastructure through which a learner can grow. Many of our former interns have reached admirable levels in their career,” he adds.
     With over a quarter of a century of experience in investment research and fund management, Impetus Arthasutra has channelised investors' money worth billions of rupees into various asset classes. These investments have achieved desirable results irrespective of the periodic economic downturns and recessions.

  • KISAN Expo and KISAN Diwas 2021 held at Thiruvananthapuram

    A two-day Kisan Expo 2021 and KISAN Diwas Celebrations were held at the Trivandrum Chamber of Commerce and Industry (TCCI) building in Thiruvananthapuram as part of the National Farmers’ Day celebrations. The Expo which was conducted jointly by TCCI and Executive Knowledge Lines (a Metro Media publication) on Dec 22nd  and 23rd, 2021 was inaugurated by Kerala’s Minister for Agriculture P Prasad. “It is the collective responsibility of the state mechanism and the public to make efforts to promote and support farmers” said Agriculture Minister P Prasad while inaugurating the Expo.

    S N Raghuchandran Nair, President, Trivandrum Chamber of Commerce and Industries presided over the inaugural ceremony. Baby Mathew Somatheeram, President, Kerala Travel Mart, Manoj Babu, Secretary, South Kerala Hoteliers’ Forum, Siji Nair, Managing Director, Executive Knowledge Lines, N Vijayagopalan Executive Editor, Executive Knowledge Lines, Dr. C. Suresh, General Secretary, Centre for Innovation in Science and Social Action, Prasad Manjali, Managing Director, Citrine Hospitality, Sisupalan Raveendran, President, Kerala Hotels and Restaurant Association were present at the function. 

    Kisan Expo 2021 was held as part of Azadi ka Amrut Mahotsav, a government initiative commemorating the 75th anniversary of Indian independence. Ten distinguished farmer producer organizations who have made significant contributions in the field of agriculture and seventy five farmers were felicitated and honoured at the function. Several farmer’s groups and organizations participated in the Expo.

    The expo which was held in association with various farmers’ organizations in the state featured seminars, product launches, exhibitions of agri-products from different fields of farming, mainly agriculture, dairy, and poultry industries. Experts presented innovative ideas and new technical skills related to the different agrarian sectors. Attendees got the chance for buyer-seller interactions and get to know the various agricultural schemes by governments at the expo.

    Another highlight of the event was the seminars and symposiums conducted on different topics. Exchanging of various agriculture produce, buyers sellers meet and the introduction of new and special schemes by the government agencies were the other major attractions. 

    On 23rd Chief guest Padmashri Lekshmikutty Amma interacted with students of the Saikrishna Public School, Chenkal about the importance of the tradition of agriculture and why farming should be taken ahead by the next generation. Students from the Saikrishna Public School presented two papers demonstrating the agricultural activities that are undertaken as part of their school curriculum. S Krishna Kumar, Member, Vellanadu Gram panchayath was awarded the Excellence in Farming innovation award at the ceremony for his innovative projects for promoting organic farming at the ground level. Many other traditional agro-practitioners, 75 traditional farmers from the State, and traditional medicine practitioners were also honoured at the function.

    Kisan Diwas is celebrated on 23 December every year across the country to commemorate the birth anniversary of the fifth prime minister of India, Chaudhary Charan Singh. Also known as National Farmers' Day, it is observed to acknowledge and honour the contribution of farmers to the overall growth of the country and its people.

    Besides, Kisan Diwas also aims at spreading awareness about the importance of the agriculture sector in India's economy.

  • OTM 2022 moves to the brand new Jio World Convention Centre in the Heart of Mumbai

    OTM Mumbai will welcome stalwarts of the international travel industry in a 5-star setting at Jio’s facility in BKC, from 9 to 11 February 2022.
    There is good news about the travel and tourism scene in India to cheer about: OTM Mumbai is moving to the brand new Jio Convention Centre located at BKC in the heart of Mumbai, from 9 to 11 February 2022. 
    After the conclusion of three very successful TTF branded regional shows in Ahmedabad, Mumbai and Kolkata in September this year, OTM Mumbai is poised to start the season in 2022 with a renewed hope and optimism, in an absolutely world-class venue that means additional safety and comfort for the buyers and sellers.

    The facilities at the OTM 2022 venue are stunning, nothing ever seen before in India, a venue that promises a whole new standard of travel exhibitions. The organisers have chosen the best in class venue for the quality, comfort, safety of exhibitors and visitors, which is of paramount importance in times such as these. 
    Located right in the middle of the city in Bandra Kurla Complex, OTM 2022 will be the first physical tradeshow of international scale in India and Asia, since the pandemic related closures. 
    The OTM Hosted Buyer Programme has always been one of the most successful, with buyers eager to get back to business and meet with all exhibitors and destinations that are open for business. It will be more so in OTM 2022, as the venue is close to many good hotels and as buyers are eager to meet sellers for the revival and rejuvenation of the travel trade. 
    Mumbai is the biggest outbound and domestic tourism market of India (~60% of the total). OTM had gathered over 1,000 exhibitors, NTOs, and private participants from 55 countries in 2020, making it the largest travel show in the Asia-Pacific. 
    Indiantravellers are in fact said to be amongst the most desired travellers for the years to come with a whooping 29 million outbound trips expected by 2025.*
    OTM 2022 edition will showcase at least 10 country pavilions and double the number of State pavilions - the largest in any travel trade show in India in the 1921-22 financial year.  New countries are joining the show from Asia, Middle East and Europe, many of them exclusively at OTM 2022. 
    Lively discussions on the future of travel and role of Governments in reviving tourism will be discussed at the OTM Forum, from speakers from India and abroad  joining in person. 
    “We decided to invest in a world class venue for hosting OTM 2022, considering that cleanliness, safety and accessibility are key factors for the sellers and buyers alike. As a result some of the countries have selected OTM 2022 as their travel trade show of choice in India.  OTM always stands for Quality and we made a commitment to our exhibitors and visitors to provide them with the best and only the best available option, even if it meant higher costs!”; said Sanjiv Agarwal, Chairman & CEO, Fairfest Media, the organisers of OTM- the leading travel show in the Asia-Pacific.

    OTM comes from India’s oldest and the largest travel trade show organisersFairfest Media Ltd, who have unparalleled experience of regional shows TTF in all the major cities in India, for three decades. This experience comes to full advantage in delivering just the right mix of genuine buyers from all over India, when participating in the OTM.

  • Tourism Minister inaugurates office complex at Sree Narayana Guru Digital Museum

    Kerala Tourism Minister Shri P.A. Mohamed Riyas today inaugurated the office complex at the upcoming digital museum featuring the life and message of Sree  Narayana Guru at his native village of Chempazhanthy as part of the government’s efforts to highlight the legacy of the 20th-century social reformer.

    Speaking at the function, the Minister said Sree Narayana Guru’s message of ‘mutual respect and tolerance” is of eternal relevance. 

    When we look at the world, we can see that intolerance and lack of mutual trust has been the root cause of strife at all times. Keeping the Guru’s message in mind will help us overcome our petty ego and rid the society of all kinds of strife and disharmony,  Shri Riyas said.

    The office complex at the digital museum will serve as a facilitation centre which will serve pilgrims visiting the museum, being built at a budget of Rs 9 crore.

    The museum, which is to be completed in a 8,000-sq.ft area, will throw light on the life of the Guru (1856-1928) and his teachings that profoundly influenced the transformation of Kerala into a modern society. The construction is being undertaken by the Uralungal Labour Contract Cooperative Society based in Vadakara of upstate Kozhikode. Already a convention centre worth Rs 9.90 crore has been constructed as part of projects totalling Rs 18.90 crore.

    Today’s function in Chempazhanthy, seven km north of the state capital, was chaired by Shri Kadakampally Surendran, MLA. Others present included Sree Narayana Gurukulam Secretary Sreemad Shubhangananda and civic body councillor Shri Chempazhanthy Udayan. 

    Later in the evening, the Minister also inaugurated a Mandapam at the Panchami Temple  at Pettah under the Tatwamasi Pilgrim Tourism project.

    The mandapam, along with rest rooms was built at a cost of Rs 49.53 lakh with assistance from Steel Industrials Kerala Ltd.

    Legislator Shri Kadakampally Surendran, a former Tourism Minister, presided over the function at Panchami Temple as well. The event was addressed by Councillor Shri P.K. Gopakumar, Travancore Devaswom Board Sthapathi Dr K. Muraleedharan Nair, Temple chief priest Tantri Prasanth G., Temple Committee President Shri C.K. Surendran, Vice President Shri V. Babu, Joint Secretary Shri V Raveendran, Treasurer Shri M. Radhakrishnan and Secretary K. Sasidharan. 

  • Cake Mixing Ceremony Held at Mascot Hotel

    KTDC Chairman P. K. Sasi inaugurated the Cake Mixing Ceremony at Mascot Hotel on December 3rd, 2021. Tourism Director Krishna Teja IAS, KTDC Marketing Manager Raj Mohan and GM of Mascot Hotel Dilip Kumar  P. graced the occasion.

    Cake Mixing Ceremony, which started during the 17th  century is held to mark the beginning of harvest season before Christmas. The mix for Christmas Cake at Mascot Hotel includes about 10 carefully selected ingredients. Dates, dry grapes, apricot, fig, black current and other dry fruits are mixed in predetermined quantity to prepare the cake mix. This cake mix is refrigerated for desired blending of aromas and flavours. This prepared dry fruit mix is used to make plum cake, pudding, etc. The aging of the dry fruit mix adds to the taste of cake.

    December 15th  onwards quality and tasty cakes would be available at Mascot Hotel. Pastries, Desserts, Savories, Cookies, etc., would also be available at affordable prices. The products available at Mascot Hotel’s Bakery would not have any artificial ingredients. These would be of low-calorie and made of natural ingredients. 

  • Kerala gets first campervan as Keravan Kerala gains momentum

    Tourism and Transport Ministers jointly unveil ‘Luxe Camper’ 

    Kerala’s Caravan Tourism project ‘Keravan Kerala’ gained further traction with Bengaluru-based start-up Campervan Camps and Holidays India Pvt Ltd rolling out its premium truck-camper, LuxeCamper, in the state today.

    Tourism Minister Shri P A Mohamed Riyas and Transport Minister Shri Antony Raju jointly unveiled the state’s first truck-camper at Mascot Hotel here. 

    The startup is promoted by former cricketer Anil Kumble, musician Shri Vijay Prakash; former Head of Sales and Marketing, Infosys, Shri Subhash Dhar; and IT expert Shri Phaneesh Murthy. 

    Speaking on the occasion, Sri Riyas said the online registration for operating tourist caravans and developing caravan parks has elicited tremendous response from industry within a short span of the launch of the project. 

    “So far, we have received 198 applications for operating caravans and around 54 applications for setting up caravan parks. Since the Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation Ltd (KSIDC) has come out with a scheme to provide loans upto Rs 5 crore, the project is sure to attract more entrepreneurs and groups,” Shri Riyas said. 

    The new campervan will give a fresh appeal to Caravan Tourism as people prefer to travel in small groups post Covid-19.   

    Noting that Caravan Tourism project has become a reality within a short time, Shri Antony Raju said in the history of Kerala Tourism no other project has taken off so quickly like this initiative. 

    LuxeCamper Founder and CEO, Shri Tiger Ramesh said Kerala is the first state to come up with a comprehensive Caravan Tourism policy and it will soon become a trend in other parts of the country.

    Tourism Director, Shri VR Krishna Teja; Kerala Tourism Development Corporation (KTDC) Chairman, Shri PK Sasi; Additional Transport Commissioner Shri Pramoj Sankar PS; LuxeCamper Director Vinay Luthra; and Kerala Travel Mart Society President (KTM), Shri Baby Mathew, were also present. 

    LuxeCamper can accommodate four travellers along with the driver in the main cabin. The truck-camper has sleeping area for two people in a compact space along with an optional tent that can be used for creating additional sleeping space.  

  • State to ramp up skill enhancing programmes Minister Rajeeve

    KSUM-backed startup’s cyber forensic lab; e-service platform opened
    The skill advancement programmes in Kerala will be ramped up to expedite the transformation of the state into a knowledge-based society, Minister for Industries, Law and Coir Shri P. Rajeeve today said, underscoring the imperative need to adapt to phenomenal changes in the realm of science and technology.
    Shri Rajeeve was speaking at the inauguration of the e-service platform and cyber forensic laboratory of Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM)-supported technology firm Mibiz Cyber Forensics, Technopark, here.
    “We have several mechanisms like Additional Skill Acquisition Programme (ASAP) and Kerala Development and Innovation Strategic Council (K-DISC)for skill development. We have embarked on a skill development programme focusing on changing trends, which is vital,” he said.
    The minister said these institutions are trying to create a knowledge-based society as knowledge becomes not only a capital but also a productive force.  
    “Kerala has a vibrant ecosystem, so the work-from-home concept should be translated into work-from-Kerala culture. We have quality education and healthcare system as advantages. Our ecosystem is always eager to promote incubators, accelerators and startups,” he pointed out.
    On the occasion, Shri Rajeeve congratulated the startup firm on its novel initiatives, which are Mibiz Citizen Advisor e-service platform and Mibiz Cyber Forensic Laboratory. The facility is located at the Thiruvananthapuram Development Authority (TRIDA) complex at Kesavadasapuram in the city.  
    Shri John M Thomas, CEO, KSUM, said Indian websites have faced around 26,000 cyber attacks in the last 10 months and Mibiz has taken up the mission to save the society from such threats.
    Cyber security and cyber forensic are innovative sectors that offer myriad scope as far as KSUM is concerned, he added.
    Shri Reji Vasanth V. J, Chairman and Managing Director, Mibiz Cyber Forensics, said the vision of the company is to set up a centre of excellence in cyber forensic and cyber security in the state in five years. 
    ShriM. G. Rajamanickam, Managing Director, Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation (KSIDC), and Shri Ganesh Nayak K, Director, Software Technology Parks of India (STPI), Thiruvananthapuram, were also present on the occasion.  
    Mibiz Citizen Advisor e-service platform aims at providing efficient and transparent services as per the requirements of the clients. Services of around 15 sectors, including health, law, transport, human resources, tourism, infrastructure development and finance are available on the platform. It will offer services, expert opinions and solutions through www.citizenadvisor.in
    The objectives of the cyber forensic lab are to create awareness among the public about cybercrimes, strengthen facilities that ensure safety in cyberworld, offer solutions for cyber victims and trace fraudsters with the aid of modern technology.     
    KSUM is the nodal agency of the Kerala Government for entrepreneurship development and incubation activities in the state.

  • Kochi to host 11th edition of Kerala Travel Mart in March 2022

    Kerala Travel Mart (KTM), the country’s largest congregation of tourism industry, will be holding its eleventh edition in Kochi in March 2022, giving an impetus to the efforts to revive the pandemic-hit tourism sector by attracting visitors from across the world.

    The event will be inaugurated at Grand Hyatt at Bolgatty, Kochi on March 24, 2022, while the following three days’ proceedings will be held at Sagara and Samudrika Convention Centre in Willingdon Island, Tourism Minister Shri P A Mohamed Riyas told a press conference here on Tuesday.

    As the ensuing edition of KTM is coming on the heels of the launch of the Caravan Tourism project by the State Government, the event will have caravan tourism and adventure tourism as the main themes, even as the internationally-acclaimed responsible tourism will also receive prominent attention, Shri Riyas said. 

    KTM 2022will give greater prominence to domestic buyers, given that tourists within the country have resumed travel even as manyforeign countries are yet to fully resume travel to India revoking the pandemic-induced restrictions.  The meet anticipates the participation of no less than 1,500 buyers, wooing them in much larger numbers compared to the previous editions.

    Dr. Venu V, Additional Chief Secretary (Tourism), said KTM has been planned by placing trust on the domestic market, which will help rejuvenate tourism and bring a qualitative change in the sector.  

    Shri Baby Mathew, President, KTM, said the strong revival of the entire industry will be made possible through KTM 2022.  

    Shri V R Krishna Teja, Director, Tourism; Shri Jose Pradeep, Secretary, KTM; former Presidents of KTM Shri EM Najeeb and Shri Abraham George were also present. 

    KTM comes at a time when the travel industry is looking at the nascent Caravan Tourism with hope, considering its potential to fetch Kerala a special place in the world tourism map,as did Houseboat Tourism earlier. 

    The government is coordinating among various departments to carry forward Caravan Tourism, which is a pioneering project being developed on PPP mode with private investors, tour operators and local communities being key stakeholders to ensure safe, customized and closest-to-nature travel experience.

    The KTM had organized a virtual summit in March this year, facilitating more than 7,000 business meets that enabled the travel industry to take major strides in overcoming the Covid-triggered economic crisis.

    Since then, Kerala Tourism had been considering organising a physical KTM to showcase Kerala as a place fast regaining normalcy after the pandemic.

    In 2021, KTM was held online from March 1 to 5. A virtual buyers meet at the event saw the participation from all over the world, including India. The majority of international buyers were from the US and UK. The others in the category included Brazil, Germany, Spain and Canada, Mexico, Oman, UAE,Australia and France. 
    Most of the domestic buyers were fromMaharashtra, a chunk of them based in Mumbai. Delhi, Gujarat and Telangana also figured prominently in the list.
    KTM Society, the country’s biggest organization in the travel and tourism segment, has been working towards reviving the industry since the spread of the coronavirus in the state 20 months ago.

  • Keravan Kerala KSIDC to finance purchase of tourist caravans setting up parks

    Loans up to Rs five crore available for enterprises
    In a major boost to Kerala’s stakeholder-friendly Caravan Tourism project ‘Keravan Kerala’, the state’s investment promotion agency Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation (KSIDC) has come out with an attractive scheme to provide loans up to Rs. five crore to purchase tourist caravans and set up caravan parks.

    Under the scheme, an enterprise is entitled to get a loan of up to Rs. 1 crore per caravan, or 70  per cent of the  cost, for buying up to five vehicles. The range of loan is from Rs. 50 Lakhs to Rs. 1 crore per vehicle. The loans will be available only to buy new vehicles.

    The interest is pegged at 8.75 per cent (floating) with a 0.5 per cent rebate for prompt repayment. The loan should be repaid in 84 months after a twelve-month moratorium period. 

    The enterprises eligible for the loan are existing resorts/resort groups (firms, LLP and Limited Companies), fleet owners and tour operators and repatriates. 

    The Caravan Tourism policy, announced by Tourism Minister Shri P A Mohamed Riyas in September this year, has generated tremendous response from the industry since its online registration process began a month back. 

    “Keravan Kerala is going to be an initiative that redefines tourism in the state. The response to the policy within a short span of its announcement has been encouraging. As the Government’s nodal agency for industrial and investment promotion, KSIDC sees it as a highly rewarding investment avenue for entrepreneurs”, said Shri MG Rajamanickam IAS, Managing Director, KSIDC. 

    “The KSIDC scheme will provide an added thrust to the project, which is set to take off soon. It also reflects on how various government departments and agencies are working in tandem for the success of this novel initiative that is going to be a key component in the post-pandemic revival of tourism in  Kerala”, said Shri V R Krishna Teja IAS, Director - Tourism.  

    The policy offers attractive incentives for the investors. The two components of the initiative are caravan operation and setting up caravan parks across the state, for which clear-cut procedures and protocols have been laid down to ensure a pleasant experience for visitors.

    Under the policy, the first 100 caravans will get to a subsidy of Rs 7.50 lakh or 15 per cent of the cost. The next 100 vehicles will get Rs 5 lakh or 10 per cent of the cost.  For 201 to 300 it will be Rs 2.50 lakh or 5 per cent of the cost. The subsidy will be available for five caravans for an individual investor or a group, for three years. 

    Within a short span, the project has also elicited keen interest from auto majors, top travel and hospitality players, local self-government institutions and service providers down to the grass roots.  

Opportunities for educated housewives

Free training in financial markets and Investment management by experts
Many educated women, housewives at present, depend on the income of a single bread-earner at home. Many of them, financially average or wealthy, are capable of having a professional life and career. But they face many hassles in taking up full-time engagements because of their priority to family matters. 
The pandemic has brought in some positive changes in society. Work-from-home (WFH) using high-end technology has become the order of the day for men and women. Educated women, fully engaged in household affairs and unable to pursue their professional aspirations, can now fulfil their dreams in the changing environment. Each of them can add value to their own family's wealth by providing a professional touch of management to their conventional savings and investment methods. What is required is a crash course on wealth management and a hand-holding by a professional organisation. 
The Financialisation of savings in India has been visible ever since the Jan Dhan accounts have changed the way savings and investments used to be among households in India. More and more savings are getting channelised into financial assets for better risk-adjusted growth and easy liquidity. Indian financial and insurance sectors provide a wide range of investment products and risk-cover instruments for people of all incomes and risk profiles. What is required to enhance this process of financialisation of household savings is to empower members of Indian households to take prudent investment decisions based on their risk-taking abilities and financial goals. 
Impetus Arthasutra is taking the first step in empowering educated Indian women with the investment knowledge required to make the right investment decisions for themselves. What can be a more enriching profession than an activity where you can add value to your family wealth!
Mumbai-based Impetus Arthasutra has offered fellowship programs for management students in the wealth management domain. It has enriched hundreds of students with the hands-on experience and practical knowledge they obtained during their fellowship at Impetus Arthasutra.
From now on, housewives also can manage their investments and surplus resources. Thus, by staying at home, a woman can achieve her dream of working while spending enough time in the family. You can assure that your family, relatives and neighbours invest in the most suitable investment options. Through that work, you gain knowledge of the financial market and become a better investment manager of your resources in future.
This completely free-of-cost training would make them aware of the opportunities ahead of them, says Mr P R DilIp, Managing Director of Impetus Arthasutra. “Impetus has a strong talent base for delivering a resourceful training and cutting-edge infrastructure through which a learner can grow. Many of our former interns have reached admirable levels in their career,” he adds.
 With over a quarter of a century of experience in investment research and fund management, Impetus Arthasutra has channelised investors' money worth billions of rupees into various asset classes. These investments have achieved desirable results irrespective of the periodic economic downturns and recessions.

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KISAN Expo and KISAN Diwas 2021 held at Thiruvananthapuram

A two-day Kisan Expo 2021 and KISAN Diwas Celebrations were held at the Trivandrum Chamber of Commerce and Industry (TCCI) building in Thiruvananthapuram as part of the National Farmers’ Day celebrations. The Expo which was conducted jointly by TCCI and Executive Knowledge Lines (a Metro Media publication) on Dec 22nd  and 23rd, 2021 was inaugurated by Kerala’s Minister for Agriculture P Prasad. “It is the collective responsibility of the state mechanism and the public to make efforts to promote and support farmers” said Agriculture Minister P Prasad while inaugurating the Expo.

S N Raghuchandran Nair, President, Trivandrum Chamber of Commerce and Industries presided over the inaugural ceremony. Baby Mathew Somatheeram, President, Kerala Travel Mart, Manoj Babu, Secretary, South Kerala Hoteliers’ Forum, Siji Nair, Managing Director, Executive Knowledge Lines, N Vijayagopalan Executive Editor, Executive Knowledge Lines, Dr. C. Suresh, General Secretary, Centre for Innovation in Science and Social Action, Prasad Manjali, Managing Director, Citrine Hospitality, Sisupalan Raveendran, President, Kerala Hotels and Restaurant Association were present at the function. 

Kisan Expo 2021 was held as part of Azadi ka Amrut Mahotsav, a government initiative commemorating the 75th anniversary of Indian independence. Ten distinguished farmer producer organizations who have made significant contributions in the field of agriculture and seventy five farmers were felicitated and honoured at the function. Several farmer’s groups and organizations participated in the Expo.

The expo which was held in association with various farmers’ organizations in the state featured seminars, product launches, exhibitions of agri-products from different fields of farming, mainly agriculture, dairy, and poultry industries. Experts presented innovative ideas and new technical skills related to the different agrarian sectors. Attendees got the chance for buyer-seller interactions and get to know the various agricultural schemes by governments at the expo.

Another highlight of the event was the seminars and symposiums conducted on different topics. Exchanging of various agriculture produce, buyers sellers meet and the introduction of new and special schemes by the government agencies were the other major attractions. 

On 23rd Chief guest Padmashri Lekshmikutty Amma interacted with students of the Saikrishna Public School, Chenkal about the importance of the tradition of agriculture and why farming should be taken ahead by the next generation. Students from the Saikrishna Public School presented two papers demonstrating the agricultural activities that are undertaken as part of their school curriculum. S Krishna Kumar, Member, Vellanadu Gram panchayath was awarded the Excellence in Farming innovation award at the ceremony for his innovative projects for promoting organic farming at the ground level. Many other traditional agro-practitioners, 75 traditional farmers from the State, and traditional medicine practitioners were also honoured at the function.

Kisan Diwas is celebrated on 23 December every year across the country to commemorate the birth anniversary of the fifth prime minister of India, Chaudhary Charan Singh. Also known as National Farmers' Day, it is observed to acknowledge and honour the contribution of farmers to the overall growth of the country and its people.

Besides, Kisan Diwas also aims at spreading awareness about the importance of the agriculture sector in India's economy.

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OTM 2022 moves to the brand new Jio World Convention Centre in the Heart of Mumbai

OTM Mumbai will welcome stalwarts of the international travel industry in a 5-star setting at Jio’s facility in BKC, from 9 to 11 February 2022.
There is good news about the travel and tourism scene in India to cheer about: OTM Mumbai is moving to the brand new Jio Convention Centre located at BKC in the heart of Mumbai, from 9 to 11 February 2022. 
After the conclusion of three very successful TTF branded regional shows in Ahmedabad, Mumbai and Kolkata in September this year, OTM Mumbai is poised to start the season in 2022 with a renewed hope and optimism, in an absolutely world-class venue that means additional safety and comfort for the buyers and sellers.

The facilities at the OTM 2022 venue are stunning, nothing ever seen before in India, a venue that promises a whole new standard of travel exhibitions. The organisers have chosen the best in class venue for the quality, comfort, safety of exhibitors and visitors, which is of paramount importance in times such as these. 
Located right in the middle of the city in Bandra Kurla Complex, OTM 2022 will be the first physical tradeshow of international scale in India and Asia, since the pandemic related closures. 
The OTM Hosted Buyer Programme has always been one of the most successful, with buyers eager to get back to business and meet with all exhibitors and destinations that are open for business. It will be more so in OTM 2022, as the venue is close to many good hotels and as buyers are eager to meet sellers for the revival and rejuvenation of the travel trade. 
Mumbai is the biggest outbound and domestic tourism market of India (~60% of the total). OTM had gathered over 1,000 exhibitors, NTOs, and private participants from 55 countries in 2020, making it the largest travel show in the Asia-Pacific. 
Indiantravellers are in fact said to be amongst the most desired travellers for the years to come with a whooping 29 million outbound trips expected by 2025.*
OTM 2022 edition will showcase at least 10 country pavilions and double the number of State pavilions - the largest in any travel trade show in India in the 1921-22 financial year.  New countries are joining the show from Asia, Middle East and Europe, many of them exclusively at OTM 2022. 
Lively discussions on the future of travel and role of Governments in reviving tourism will be discussed at the OTM Forum, from speakers from India and abroad  joining in person. 
“We decided to invest in a world class venue for hosting OTM 2022, considering that cleanliness, safety and accessibility are key factors for the sellers and buyers alike. As a result some of the countries have selected OTM 2022 as their travel trade show of choice in India.  OTM always stands for Quality and we made a commitment to our exhibitors and visitors to provide them with the best and only the best available option, even if it meant higher costs!”; said Sanjiv Agarwal, Chairman & CEO, Fairfest Media, the organisers of OTM- the leading travel show in the Asia-Pacific.

OTM comes from India’s oldest and the largest travel trade show organisersFairfest Media Ltd, who have unparalleled experience of regional shows TTF in all the major cities in India, for three decades. This experience comes to full advantage in delivering just the right mix of genuine buyers from all over India, when participating in the OTM.

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Tourism Minister inaugurates office complex at Sree Narayana Guru Digital Museum

Kerala Tourism Minister Shri P.A. Mohamed Riyas today inaugurated the office complex at the upcoming digital museum featuring the life and message of Sree  Narayana Guru at his native village of Chempazhanthy as part of the government’s efforts to highlight the legacy of the 20th-century social reformer.

Speaking at the function, the Minister said Sree Narayana Guru’s message of ‘mutual respect and tolerance” is of eternal relevance. 

When we look at the world, we can see that intolerance and lack of mutual trust has been the root cause of strife at all times. Keeping the Guru’s message in mind will help us overcome our petty ego and rid the society of all kinds of strife and disharmony,  Shri Riyas said.

The office complex at the digital museum will serve as a facilitation centre which will serve pilgrims visiting the museum, being built at a budget of Rs 9 crore.

The museum, which is to be completed in a 8,000-sq.ft area, will throw light on the life of the Guru (1856-1928) and his teachings that profoundly influenced the transformation of Kerala into a modern society. The construction is being undertaken by the Uralungal Labour Contract Cooperative Society based in Vadakara of upstate Kozhikode. Already a convention centre worth Rs 9.90 crore has been constructed as part of projects totalling Rs 18.90 crore.

Today’s function in Chempazhanthy, seven km north of the state capital, was chaired by Shri Kadakampally Surendran, MLA. Others present included Sree Narayana Gurukulam Secretary Sreemad Shubhangananda and civic body councillor Shri Chempazhanthy Udayan. 

Later in the evening, the Minister also inaugurated a Mandapam at the Panchami Temple  at Pettah under the Tatwamasi Pilgrim Tourism project.

The mandapam, along with rest rooms was built at a cost of Rs 49.53 lakh with assistance from Steel Industrials Kerala Ltd.

Legislator Shri Kadakampally Surendran, a former Tourism Minister, presided over the function at Panchami Temple as well. The event was addressed by Councillor Shri P.K. Gopakumar, Travancore Devaswom Board Sthapathi Dr K. Muraleedharan Nair, Temple chief priest Tantri Prasanth G., Temple Committee President Shri C.K. Surendran, Vice President Shri V. Babu, Joint Secretary Shri V Raveendran, Treasurer Shri M. Radhakrishnan and Secretary K. Sasidharan. 

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