The Ministry of Shipping has taken up an ambitious plan to develop Lighthouses dotting India’s vast coastline as new beacons of tourism. “All over the world lighthouses enthrall tourists with their scenic and serene surroundings and rich maritime heritage. In India there is a vast tourism potential, which has largely remained untapped”, said the Minister for Shipping Nitin Gadkari while addressing the Investors Summit on Development of Lighthouses as Beacons of Tourism in Mumbai today.
Gadkari said India has as many as 189 lighthouses and the Directorate General of Lighthouses and Lightships (DGLL), Noida, has drawn up a plan to develop 78 of them as tourist attractions under Public-Private Partnership.Such identified Lighthouses are in Gujarat, Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Kerala, Lakshadweep, Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, West Bengal and Andaman and Nicobar Islands. 9 Lighthouses from Maharashtra and Goa – located at Sunk Rock, Kanhoji Island, Uttan Point, Korlai Fort, Jaigadh, Ratnagiri, Devgadh, Vengurla Rocks, Tolkeshwar Point, Fort Aguada and Sao George are part of the lighthouse development project.
Gadkari said the Shipping Ministry has already held road shows in Chennai, Kochi and Visakhapatnam and the outcome has been very encouraging, with 236 potential investors participating in them. He said the government is also expecting that development of these lighthouses as vibrant tourist spots may give a boost to local economy by generating additional employment as most of these lighthouses are located in the remote areas of the country.