One more feather has been added to the feather to the cap of the achievement of the State by winning 22nd National Level Award for Rural Tourism Promotion, ‘Har Gaon Ki Kahani’ Scheme launched by the Department of Tourism and Civil Aviation in the India International Tourism and Travel Trade which concluded at Banglore on January 19, 2012.

Chief Minister congratulated the Department of Tourism and Civil Aviation for getting yet another award in one of the most prestigious Trade Fair. He said that with the same number of total Awards won by the State during past four years had reached 52 which was unparallel in the development and achievement history of the State. He said that new dimensions had been given to the tourism promotion activities during past four years which had not only yielded positive results but also won a number of national and international level Awards for the State, thereby bringing the State to the forefront of the tourism potential destinations in the world. He said that the State had brought out a coffee table book ‘Har Ghar Kuchh Kehta Hai’ narrating the historical background of the heritage buildings in the capital town of Shimla which was well received by the enthusiasts and researchers interested in knowing the historical facts of the important buildings in Shimla. He said that it had been an endeavour to give promotion to heritage tourism in the State.

Chief Minister said that keeping in view the interests of the tourists to stay away from the maddening crowd, traffic congestion and pollution of the urban areas, the state had launched ‘Home Stay’ scheme by roping in villagers to register their houses as hotel units to cater to the basic boarding and lodging facilities of the tourists interested in staying in the villages. He said that a large number of progressive villagers got their houses registered and its booking was also available on internet. He said that to give further boost to rural tourism one more ambitious scheme of ‘ Har Gaon Ki Kahani’ was launched wherein initially one village from each of the 12 districts were identified which carried with it some historical importance and published a volume of compiled stories with photographs to attract tourists to visit such villages. He said that the scheme received overwhelming response and now the tourism had entered into Himachal villages. He said that the motive behind all such moves had been to strengthen the basic tourism industry in the state and rope in villagers so that they were able to generate income avenues out of tourism promotion activities. He said that more such prizes were likely to be won by the State in near future thereby making Himachal Pradesh a real role model of overall development in the country.