<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Tourist city Bundi, located amid Araveli Hill terrain that witnesses a huge footfall during the tourist season commencing from October to late March, is currently receiving a lukewarm response. The festivity of Diwali that attracts tourists in heaps to the city, also failed to charm tourists. The industry experts believe that beside demonetization of high currency notes, high prices of local commodities followed by GST tax slab, has made the local administration and municipal council indifferent. And further this is the reason they are linking to the tourism industry being adversely hit, leaving most of the guest houses and hotel rooms vacant and tourist-friendly sites deserted.Unplanned construction at the tourist spots of the city, poor waste management and road conditions are all adding up to the negative publicity and indifference of the local administration as well as municipal council towards the promotion of tourism has greatly hit the business prospects and heritage maintenance of the city, alleged Sushil Metha, a senior member of Bundi hotel and paying guests house association and Bundi Utsav committee.‘Not a single fresh site of tourist interest has been developed in past several years despite there being several spots of natural beauty that could be developed to attract tourists,” he said, claiming that the administration and the concerned authorities were forwarded a proposal to develop ‘Chopadiya’, a spot on the hilltop above Naval Sagar lake as ‘Sunset Point’ but it got the cold shoulder and it is lying deserted and abandoned. Naval Sagar Lake is stinking badly, but the municipal authority has not taken any substantial step to address the problem. Earlier this year in a ceremonial function in the presence of the state UDH minister Sri Chand Kripalani, boats were roped in Naval Sagar Lake for the tourists but in absence of maintenance and foul smell emanating from the lake, the boats were pushed aside to the shore. “Beside poor waste management and garbage lying in heaps at tourist sites, the high ticket price for the fort, that is currently Rs500 for two hours and Rs200 for other key monuments in the city has played a role in receding number of tourists,” said Yug Prasad, a local artist who runs an art and craft shops below Taragarh palace in Naharka Chotta area.OFFICIALS ON THE DEFENSIVEAssistant district tourist officer Prem Shankar Saini did admit the indifference of local municipal council, but he claimed that the state government from time to time has sanctioned projects and schemes to develop and beautify the places of tourist interests. World fame Rani Ji Ki Bawari (step well) in Bundi has recently been renovated and maintained with a budget of Rs65 lakh, he said adding that the budget for the road Bijoliya in Bhilwara district to Lakheri in Bundi district that would boost up tourism in the region has also been sanctioned.

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Bundi tourism takes a hit amid GST, negligence of civic bodies