Not planning to waive tourist visa fee: Govt

By: | Published: July 25, 2016 8:47 PM

Government does not intend to waive tourist visa fee as a measure to give impetus to foreign tourist flow in the country, the Lok Sabha was informed today.

Mahesh Sharma added that discussion regarding improvement of infrastructure and connectivity is being done so as to boost foreign tourist arrivals in the country. Mahesh Sharma added that discussion regarding improvement of infrastructure and connectivity is being done so as to boost foreign tourist arrivals in the country. (Express Photo)
Government does not intend to waive tourist visa fee as a measure to give impetus to foreign tourist flow in the country, the Lok Sabha was informed today. However, discussions for overall liberalisation in the existing visa policy to enhance the ease of travel of foreign tourists were being carried out, Tourism Minister Mahesh Sharma said in a written reply in the House. “The government has no plan of waiving tourist visa fees. However, there is a broad discussion underway for overall liberalisation in the existing visa policy so as to enhance the ease of travel of foreign tourists to India,” he said.
He added that discussion regarding improvement of infrastructure and connectivity is being done so as to boost foreign tourist arrivals in the country.
Replying to a query on whether the government plans to waive off VAT on purchases by foreign tourists, he said, “VAT being a tax on sale or purchase of goods is purely a state matter … state governments have sovereign power to make Sale Tax or VAT laws. “Therefore, the central government (Department of Revenue) cannot take any action in respect of VAT,” he said.

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