World Tourism Day: Inadequate amenities, poor connectivity hit tourism sector

Penukonda fort in dilapidated state; Penukonda fort corridor; Veerabhadra Swamy temple
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Penukonda fort in dilapidated state; Penukonda fort corridor; Veerabhadra Swamy temple 

Highlights

A proposal to form tourism circuits to connect interior historic places in Rayalaseema region has been pending for a long time

Anantapur: On the occasion of World Tourism Day on Monday, several people's organisations are demanding the government to create a Rayalaseema tourism circuit and develop amenities at the tourist places and also resorts at identified places in the region.

The region is historically and culturally rich with a past that all Telugus feel proud of. World Tourism Day was designated by the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) in September 1979, with the commemoration to commence in 1980.

This date was chosen to coincide with an important milestone in world tourism: the anniversary of the adoption of the UNWTO Statutes on September 27, 1970.

Rayalaseema region is home to some of the most magnificent structures in the world. Anantapur in the state is also famous for live forts and sculpture. Places like Gooty, Penukonda and other small forts located in the district mesmerise one with its splendour. The Gooty Fort is one of the centrally protected monuments of national importance.

History Eight inscriptions have been found on the rocks close to the Narasimha temple located within the fort premises. The fort later came under the control of the East India Company. Its administrator Thomas Munro who served as the district collector was buried at the cemetery located at the foothill.

The past glory of the Gooty Fort returns if the government releases the funds required for its development as proposed eight years ago. Social worker Dr M Suresh Babu opined that there will be a significant effect on teachers and students academic knowledge and their sensitivity of field trips to historical-cultural heritage sites are encouraged.

Heritage visit empowers student body to overcome the social, cultural, economic, and geographic barriers, he maintained. Students learn the information on visiting various heritage sites, forts, and monuments.

A proposal to form tourism circuits to connect interior historic places in Rayalaseema region has been neglected and confined to papers. Forts, monuments, great sculptures, temples, and exclusive locations could not be brought to light due to lack of proper transport connectivity and other facilities.

Venkataramana Swamy temple in Tadipathri has also not reached the mark to attract tourists and devotees. Government reportedly failed to improve facilities in Anantapur district as against priority given to other parts of AP.

Thimmamma Marrimanu is a banyan tree in Anantapur, located about 25 kms from Kadiri. It is probably a specimen of Ficus benghalensis.

Its canopy covers 19,107 m2 (4.721 acres), and it was recorded as the largest tree specimen in the world in the Guinness Book of World Records in 1989. Vemana was a poet and was known as the 'Praja Kavi', meaning 'the poet of the people'.

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