On 20th July 2021, the department of business administration, Tezpur University, and Finderbridge hosted International E-conference on Northeast India Tourism (ICNIT) 2021.

The conference was divided into three sessions — tourism education, entrepreneurship, career & skill development; reinventing and recovery by tourism officials/stakeholders/entrepreneurs of the North East; sustainable and photography tourism, and tourism marketing.

Without an inch of doubt, the event was a grand success with hundreds of travel and tourism enthusiasts joined in along with a panel of experts from the domain.

“The purpose of the virtual conference is to bring domain experts from Industry and Academia and to learn from their valuable insights.”

Prof. Chandan Goswami, Head, Dept. of Business Administration

“Stakeholders of the tourism industry will have to study the psychological and behavioural changes in the tourists due to the COVID-19 pandemic are to be studied and strategies developed for the revival of tourism in the post-pandemic period.”

Speaking on the occasion as the Chief Guest, Mr Robert Romawia Royte, Minister of State for Tourism, ICT & Sports & Youth Services(I/C) Government of Mizoram, also took addressed the attendees and emphasized the need to build a circuit among Northeastern states so that by collaborating Northeast could take the podium as an emerging region in the tourism sector.

“Northeast states are rich in diversity, we can promote ecotourism, and nature-based tourism here.”

Mr Royte

He also informed that Govt. of Mizoram has given importance to “Responsible Tourism Policy” and has made a huge difference in the tourism sector in Mizoram.

That’s not all. The conference had other experts as well who have put down their thoughts on the entire scenario of North East India tourism.

Let’s take a look at what the panel has addressed.

Mr Sankha Subhra Devbarman, Regional Director (Northeast), Ministry of Tourism, Government of India provided useful information to the audience that the Govt. of India has taken the initiative of giving 5 Lakh visas free of cost to the tourist visiting India by 31st March 2022 to increase tourist footfall in the country.

He also added that the Govt. of India is assisting the Tour Operators and Travel Agents (TTS) by giving Rs. One lakh for restarting their business. He urged Northeast tourism stakeholders to come forward and take this opportunity.

Mr Himangshu Baruah, the founder of Finderbridge Tourism said that the tourism industry has to address- the new normal travel scenario post-Covid episode. He also highlighted the importance of Sustainable and Responsible Tourism Strategies. He opined that tourism students and enthusiasts need to learn new skill development models required to rebuild the tourism industry.

Mr Cyril V. D. Diengdoh, IAS- Director of Tourism, Government of Meghalaya talked about three principles —Defining carrying capacity, Zero Waste, and Right pricing. Further, in order to promote and assist tourists, he has mentioned about Meghalaya tourism app.

Mr Vantwal Lalengmawia, MCS, Director of Tourism, Government of Mizoram, highlighted how Mizoram prepared for post pandemics and how social media influence tourists. He also talked about why the state of Mizoram is our next destination and why should we visit Mizoram.

Over and above, he has not just explained the culture and tradition of Mizoram but also the major destinations and strategies for sustainable tourism.

Industry veterans such as Mr Arun Kumar Singh, CEO IndiaOne, Ex-CEO of Deccan Airlines; Mr Sandeep Dutta, Marketing Manager, Korea Tourism; Ms Akshita Lahkar, Finderbridge; Mrs Jessica Snock, Global Goodwill Ambassador, United Nations Peace Keepers Federal Council etc. were also a major part of the event as they shared some of the key insights from the domain.   From the academics point of view, Ms Mugdha Minshi, Wildlife & Environmental Law Specialist; Ms Lony Singpho, Tourism Professor, Kaziranga University and Educator, Northeast Tourism Academy, etc. were the key folks who addressed several key aspects of the domain.

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