The frequency of flights between Chennai and Jaffna, Sri Lanka, will increase from four times per week to daily services. According to Scindia, the daily flights between Chennai and Jaffna will boost trade and business between Sri Lanka and India.
In a pre-recorded address delivered on day two of the 67th Annual Convention of the Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI), which is being held in Colombo, the Union Civil Aviation Minister made these comments.
He emphasised in his speech the close cultural and commercial ties between Sri Lanka and India.
At the 67th Annual Convention of @TAAI1951, Sri Lanka, I was pleased to digitally express my opinions on the state of the Indian aviation industry and how it has emerged as a crucial pillar of societal advancement. Also emphasised the close linkages between India and Sri Lanka in terms of trade and culture, which have been exemplified by their collaboration on infrastructure development and connectivity, Scinida wrote in a tweet.
He stated during the convention that “India’s aviation sector was on the runway prior to 2014”. It has finally gained traction in the previous nine years. The aviation industry is poised to become competitive and stable. I think our relationship with Sri Lanka affords us a unique chance to implement a number of changes to solve immediate difficulties in the industry and establish ourselves as a significant source of power and influence in the global aviation ecosystem.
The first air service agreement between the two nations, he continued, was inked in 1968 and allowed Indian airlines to fly from any location in India to any location in Sri Lanka, improving connectivity throughout the Global South.
There are 16 active flights each day from various parts of India to Colombo. The flow of cargo has also been improved, and with the help of both governments, we are currently running a direct flight from Chennai to Jaffna on this platform, said Scindia.
Additionally, he stated that “we will increase this frequency from four times a week to daily flights effective from July 16, 2023,” citing the growing demand for the route as well as its potential to boost trade and commerce.
Additionally, he exhorted all stakeholders to work together to advance the industry’s success and expansion.
After an 18-year hiatus, the conference of the Travel Agents Association of India is taking place from July 6 to July 9 in Colombo, the capital of Sri Lanka, with more than 700 attendees, most of whom are from India, according to the report by RRM Lilani.
The 67th Convention of the TAAI is more significant because of the long-standing, enduring relationship between India and Sri Lanka.
Due to political upheaval and the economic crisis, the TAAI 2022 Convention, which was originally scheduled to take place in Colombo from April 19 to 22, was postponed. However, now that Sri Lanka is on the road to recovery, the Convention has returned to the nation to support a regional tourist network.
According to Sri Lanka Tourism, India continues to be the top market among the top ten, and by 2023, arrivals from that country are predicted to have doubled. Sri Lanka holds roadshows in India to promote its tourist destinations, cultural significance, and travel options in an effort to attract Indian tourists.
At the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall in Colombo, TAAI, the largest and most established travel company in India, will highlight the theme of “Futuristic Focus on Transcending Borders” and highlight Sri Lanka’s status as a convenient, welcoming, and safe travel destination for Indian tourists. The Sri Lankan Airlines has given the conference its full support, along with that of the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau and the Sri Lanka Association of Inbound Tour Operators.
Ranil Wickremesinghe, the president of Sri Lanka, and Dinesh Gunawardena, the prime minister, along with other notable dignitaries and representatives from both nations, officially opened the event.
Gopal Bagley, the Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka, gave a welcome speech in which he emphasised the importance of this important event and provided a forum for international participants to network and share information.
The convention’s ‘Transcending Borders’ theme emphasises the embrace of new experiences and locations while exploring the tourism industry’s changing landscape.
North Indian tourists are drawn to Sri Lanka by the well-known Ramayana Trail, and last year Sri Lanka Tourism introduced the “Murugan Trail” for South Indian visitors. From the north to the south of Sri Lanka, there are roughly 10 places of worship that make up the “Murugan Trail,” including the Jaffna Nallur Kandaswamy Kovil and the Kataragama or Kadirgamam Murugan Temple.
One of the principal deities revered by the South Indian population is Lord Shiva.
The bilateral relationship between India and Sri Lanka is heavily reliant on tourism. On April 14, 2015, the federal government decreased the visa price as a show of goodwill and started the e-Tourist Visa (eTV) programme for Sri Lankan tourists.
355,000 of the 1.91 million visitors to Sri Lanka in 2019 came from India.
One of the top ten sources of tourists for the Indian tourism industry is Sri Lanka. Indian tourists helped to boost Sri Lanka’s tourism industry, which had been negatively impacted by the attacks on Easter Sunday.
Source- the print