Kadakampally Surendran, Kerala tourism Minister alleged on Friday that the External Affairs has denied him permission to be a part of a United Nations (UN) tourism event, prompting the state’s Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan to write to PM Narendra Modi, urging him to reconsider the ministry’s decision. As per Indian Express report, the Kerala tourism Minister alleged that “narrow-minded politics of the External Affairs Ministry” was behind the decision to deny his clearance. The 22nd edition of the General Assembly of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) is being conducted in Chengdu, China, from September 11 to 16.
As per the report, CM Vijayan in his letter to PM Modi said that the state is disappointed at the denial of opportunity in promoting its tourism at an international forum. He added that the participation in the 22nd session of UNWTO would have given Kerala an opportunity to showcase its achievements on the world stage.
According to a report by The Indian Express, Surendran said, “A tourism conference is an important event for the state’s Tourism Department. I was the only minister from India invited to take part in it. The ministry has not cited any reason for the denial while communicating the same to our office. Narrow-minded politics of the ministry is behind the denial. I don’t see any other reason.”
Although Surendran was denied permission by the External Affairs, it was informed that two bureaucrats will attend the conference, the report added.
According to information, the Secretary-General of UNWTO had sent a letter to Surendran in early June, inviting him to take part in the general assembly. The minister had last month approached the External Affairs Ministry seeking its clearance to take part in the event.