Focus on tourism’s job opportunities, says minister

March 18th, 2011 - 8:41 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, March 18 (IANS) Even a little bit of training in the field of tourism will contribute to employment, which is why every state must realise the worth of this sector, Minister of Tourism Subodh Kant Sahai said here Friday.

He was addressing the day-long national seminar on Skills Development in Tourism and Hospitality sector in India organised by the Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU).

“In the tourism industry, even if we spend meagre amount, the returns are enormous. By training even school drop-outs, IGNOU is doing a great job,” said the minister.

Conducted under the aegis of IGNOU’s School of Tourism and Hospitality Services Sectoral Management (SOTHSSM), the seminar comprised of two sessions - challenges of skills development and a panel discussion on the human resource development in the tourism and hospitality sector.

Sahai also pointed out the importance of those pursuing the course and said: “Domestic tourism is also a big area of activity. People indulge in religious pilgrimages to Amarnath, Vaishno Devi etc. and wherever such activities happen, your requirement is absolutely necessary.”

“This industry contributes to seven percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The private and the public sector together can meet 40 percent of the demand, but the question comes as to how other industries could innovatively deal with this industry,” said V.N Rajasekharan Pillai, vice-chancellor of IGNOU.

The varsity is offering programmes ranging from certificate to Ph.D. to meet various demands of tourism and hospitality sector. They add value by upgrading skills and make students employable immediately, said Harkirat Bains, the director of SOTHSSM.

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