Domestic and international tourists visiting the state capital will soon have a rejuvenated attraction as the Veli coastal village here gets a grand and massive makeover.
Minister for Tourism Kadakampally Surendran today inaugurated the implementation of six renovation projects worth Rs 34.8 crores at an event held at the Veli Tourist Village, which is just 9.1 kilometres away from the Central Railway Station and 5.5 kilometres from the International Airport.
A 2.5 kilometre Miniature Railway primarily targeted at children worth Rs 9 crores and an Urban Park of Rs 4.99 crores will appeal to tourists seeking leisure at Veli that has long since been known for its beautiful confluence of the sea and the lake.
Development of the lake shore at a cost of Rs 4.76 crores; a Convention Centre of Rs 9.98 crores; Multi-Purpose Facilitation Centre (Rs 3.60crores) and renovation of existing swimming pool and park (Rs 2.47crores) are the other highlights of this makeover.
In his inaugural address Shri Kadakampally Surendran said, “Providing basic facilities together with ensuring security of tourists, especially children, is at the core of the Department’s tourism development plans.”
“In the last 1,000 days the Government has taken dedicated steps to improve the infrastructure and safety of Veli Tourist Village including 37 units of solar lamps and 32 CCTV cameras. Long before Responsible Tourism project came into vogue, Veli was able to provide direct jobs to around 100 persons from the community, besides many more indirectly,” the Minister added.
The Minister also appealed to the community to pledge towards making Veli Tourist Village a plastic and garbage-free tourist destination.
Congratulating the Minister for the efforts being initiated at Veli, VS Sivakumar MLA who presided over the function said, “With the right interventions, any place in Kerala can be converted to a tourist destination thanks to the natural beauty and greenery of our state.”
Earlier Tourism Director P Bala Kiran welcomed the participants. Presenting a report of the projects at Veli he said that the planned 25,000 sq.ft Convention Centre can accommodate a thousand people.
Chief Guest Adv. VK Prasanth, Mayor; KG Mohanlal, Chairman and Managing Director, Kerala Tourism Infrastructure Limited; Mary Lily Rajas, Councillor, Vettukad; Shaji Madhavan; Managing Director, Tourfed; EM Najeeb, Vice President, IATO; Baby Mathew Somatheeram, President, Kerala Travel Mart; and R Rahul, Managing Director, KTDC were present and spoke on the occasion.