New Delhi: The Ministry of Tourism, in last 18 months, has sanctioned projects worth Rs. 2333 Crore under Swadesh Darshan and PRASAD, the flagship schemes of the Ministry of Tourism. These projects envisage world class infrastructural development of the sites with special emphasis on Tourist Facilities including Tourist Facilitation Centres, way-side amenities Parking, Public convenience, Illumination, Sound and Light Shows and Theme Parks.In the meeting of the National Steering Committee (NSC, the apex committee for steering these schemes) held yesterday under the Chairmanship of Dr. Mahesh Sharma, Minister of State (I/C) for Tourism and Culture, the status was reported by the Mission Directors of Swadesh Darshan and PRASAD Schemes. In his inaugural address Dr. Sharma stressed on the need of proper coordination / convergence of schemes with Central Ministries for proper development of Infrastructure in the country.

Speaking on occasion Union Tourism Secretary Shri Vinod Zutshi emphasized upon the need for proper Rail, Road & Air connectivity with places identified under various Circuits.

11 projects in Amravati, Kamakhya Temple, Patna Sahib, Patna,Vishnupad Gaya, Shri Jaggannath Puri, Amritsar,Ajmer-Pushkar,,Varanasi,Mathura-Vrindavan, Kedarnath Dham Uttarakhand for Rs.284.53 have been sanctioned so far under the PRASAD scheme. They include 2 Projects worth Rs.36.96 Crore approved for Varanasi River Cruise and Dwarka and 3 Projects viz Laser show on Ghats of Varanasi and projects of Kanchipuram, and Vellankanni .are under active consideration of the Ministry..

Thirteen themes tourist circuits of Buddhist Circuit, Ecotourism Circuit, Wild life, Himalayan, Spiritual, North East India, Tribal, Krishna, Rural, Coastal, Heritage , Desert, Ramayana have been identified to attract both domestic and international tourists having special interest of visiting such places. Swadesh Darshan is a Mission Mode project of Ministry of Tourism, Government of India.From January 2015 till date 25 projects for Rs. 2048 Cr. have been sanctioned. They include EcoTourism Circuit in states of Uttarkhand,Telangana,Kerala, Tribal Circuit in Nagaland, Chattisgarh, Telangana, Coastal Circuit in Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Pudicherry,West Bengal, Maharashtra, Goa, Buddhist Circuit in Bihar and Madhya Pradesh, Himalayan Circuit in Jammu and Kashmir, Desert Circuit in Rajasthan, Wild Life Circuit in Madhya Pradesh & Assam and North East India Circuit in Arunachal, Sikkim, Manipur, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Tripura under Swadesh Darshan.

Five Pan India Mega Circuits have been also identified namely, Ramayana-Krishna- Buddhist Mega Circuit, Himalayan & Adventure, World Heritage, Coastal and Wild Life Circuit identified for development under Swadesh Darshan to showcase India as a Land of Buddha and destination for Spiritual and Religious Tourism.

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