The tourism industry in Assam is taking a major hit right now following the violent protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019 (CAA) across the state.
According to the state’s tourism department, Assam will face around Rs 1,000 crore revenue collection loss by the end of the financial year in March 2020.
Addressing a press meet in Guwahati on December 31st, 2019, Assam Tourism Development Corporation Chairman Jayanta Malla Baruah said that the state tourism sector has been affected following the recent violent protests.
“The tourism industry has been severely hit as many prospective domestic and foreign tourists had cancelled the bookings to visit Assam. Following reports of protests in media, tourists are not keen to visit Assam,” Baruah said.
He added, “It will require more than two years to recover the loss. The hotels in Guwahati lost over Rs 3 lakh between December 11th-25th, 2019.”
The Australian government on December 17th, 2019, issued an advisory to the citizens to not to travel to Northeast India, which has witnessed massive protests against the new citizenship act.
An advisory issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade asked Australian citizens to exercise ‘high degree of caution’ while travelling to India. Earlier, the United States, United Kingdom, Singapore, Canada, Taiwan and Israel had also warned their citizens against travelling to the region in view of the protests against the act which was passed by the Rajya Sabha on December 11th, 2019.
Speaking on Japanese Prime Minister Prime Minister Shinzo Abe cancelling his trip to Guwahati on December 15th, 2019, Baruah said, “The meeting has been cancelled. We are hopeful that the Japanese Prime Minister will visit India soon.”
The anti-CAA damaged a stage in Guwahati’s Dispur set up for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s summit with his Japanese counterpart Abe.
He further informed that the state tourism department will organise roadshows in Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Chennai.
The state is witnessing one of the worst violent protests in its history. Rail stations, a post office, a bank, a bus terminus, shops, several vehicles and other public properties have been either set ablaze or ransacked. Four people have been killed in police firing so far, while an oil tanker driver was charred to death when his vehicle was set on fire in Orang.