India's Guidelines for Ecotourism Can be turned around!
August 2011: The extremely quixotic text of the official draft Tourism Policy posted on the Ministry of Environment and Forests' (MoEF) website has not thrown too much clarity on the ecotourism canvas. The Drafting Committee Chairman, Sujit Banerjee, former Secretary Tourism, Government of India, wrote to Jairam Ramesh to state that many critical recommendations of the committee had been ignored, while new points that had not even been discussed by the committee had been inserted. Most of India's leading travel operators, environmentalists and wildlifers seemed to agree.In the event, the Chairman corrected the MoEF's official draft and sent it to the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) after consulting as many of the other members as he could. Hopefully, the new Minister for Environment and Forests, Jayanthi Natarajan, will ensure that practicality and professionalism rule the day.