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Culture and Tourism


  • The Ministry of Culture has two attached, six subordinate offices and thirty-five autonomous organisations, which are fully funded by the Government.
  • There are seven zonal cultural centres working mainly on folk and traditional arts of different zones.
  • There are also four missions:
    • National Mission for Manuscripts
    • National Mission for Monument and Antiquities
    • National Mission on Libraries
    • Gandhi Heritage Sites Mission
  • India has Cultural Agreements with 107 countries and agreements relating to Cultural Exchange Programmes have been signed with 69 countries.

Functions of Ministry of Culture:

  • Protection, development and promotion of all types of heritage of culture namely, tangible heritage, intangible heritage and knowledge heritage.
  • In tangible heritage, takes care of all the centrally protected monuments of national importance, which is achieved through Archeological Survey of India.
  • Promotion of museum movement in the country and majority of the museums are under its administrative control.
  • Engaged in recognizing excellence in the field of art and culture by way of awards given by institutions like Sahitya Akademi and Sangeet Natak Akademi.
  • Custodian of all the major libraries in the country. It also extends grant-in-aid for library development and is also responsible for all policy matters regarding library development.
  • Responsible for the implementation of various UNESCO conventions in the field of culture and for entering into Cultural Exchange Agreements with Partnering countries.
  • Involved in the protection and promotion of Buddhist and Tibetian Culture and is doing this through various institutions located at Sarnath, Varanasi and Leh.


Mumbai gets World Heritage Building

  • India’s nomination of the ‘Victorian and Art Deco Ensembles of Mumbai’ has been inscribed on the World Heritage list of the UNESCO.
  • Mumbai becomes the second city in the country after Ahmedabad to figure in the list.
  • India: 37 World Heritage inscriptions (29 cultural + 7 natural + 1 mixed sites).

International Kala Mela

  • First-ever International Kala Mela- New Delhi (February 2018).
  • Aim- to promote the spirit of unity in diversity and the relevance of Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat.
  • With more than 300 exhibition stalls, it had more than 800 participants from across the world.

Seva Bhoj Yojana

  • Launched by Ministry of Culture in 2018.
  • Aim: To reimburse the central government share of Central Goods and Services Tax and Integrated Goods and Services Tax so as to lessen the financial burden of religious/charitable institutions who provide food /prasad I langar (community kitchen) /Bhandara, free of cost without any discrimination to public/devotees.

550th Birth Anniversary Celebration of Guru Nanak (2019)

  • Government of India commemorated the 550th Birth Anniversary of Guru Nanak at national as well as international level in befitting manner.
  • The Sikh Gurdwara Prabhandak Committee, Amritsar is the knowledge partner of the central government.

Kabir Mahotsav

  • The 500th death anniversary of 15th Century poet-saint Kabir was held in June 2018 in Maghar, Sant Kabir Nagar district of Uttar Pradesh.
  • The festival was organised by this Ministry to showcase the glory of Kabir’s literature and his message of oneness uniting all sections of the society.

Lalit Kala Akademi:

  • Lalit Kala Akademi, the National Academy of Art, was set up in 1954.
  • It is the government’s apex cultural body in the field of visual arts in India.
  • It is an autonomous body, which is fully funded by the Ministry of Culture.
  • All through the year, it presents exhibitions and educational programmes of unparalleled significance; sustains a library, art collection, archives, conservation laboratory and supports scholars and publications of pre-eminent intellectual merit all over the country.
  • The Akademi’s sincere commitment to the development of art is evident through the strong national and international programmes organized by the headquarters in New Delhi and by the Centres situated at Bhubaneshwar, Chennai, Kolkata, Lucknow, Garhi (New Delhi) and sub-centres at Shimla and Patna.
  • Another major art promotional activity of the Akademi is to provide studios to artists who work in various disciplines of art, such as sculpture, graphics, ceramics and paintings.
  • In Delhi, the Akademi administers the Garhi Artists’ Studios where approximately 200 artists work regularly.

Sangeet Natak Akademi:

  • In 1945, the Asiatic Society of Bengal submitted a proposal for the creation of a National Cultural Trust consisting of three academies- an academy of dance, drama and music; an academy of letters and an academy of art and architecture.
  • It led to the creation of three national academies after Independence.
  • The national Academy named Sangeet Natak Akademi was the first of these entities to be established by a resolution of the Ministry of Education.
  • In 1961, it was reconstituted by the Government as a society and registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 (as amended in 1957).
  • The Sangeet Natak Akademi Awards conferred annually on eminent artists and scholars are considered the most coveted honours in the field of the performing arts.
  • The Akademi has a large archive of audio and video tapes, 16-mm films, photographs and transparencies and remains the single most important resource for researchers in the field of performing arts of India.
  • The Akademi maintains a reference library consisting of books in English, Hindi and some regional languages.
  • The Jawaharlal Nehru Manipur Dance Academy (JNMDA) in Imphal, the premier institution in the teaching of Manipuri dance and music, established in 1954, is the first of these institutions.
  • In 1959, the Akademi established the National School of Drama and the Asian Theatre Institute; and in 1964, the Kathak Kendra, both being based in Delhi.
  • The Akademi’s other projects of national importance are in Kutiyattam theatre of Kerala, commenced in 1991.
  • Kutiyattam was recognized by UNESCO as a masterpiece of oral and intangible heritage of humanity in 2001.
  • The project on Chhau dance of Odisha, Jharkhand and West Bengal began in 1994.
  • The project support to Sattriya music, dance, theatre and allied arts of Assam was started in 2002.

National School of Drama:

  • One of the foremost theatre institutions in the world and the only one of its kind in India was set up by Sangeet Natak Akademi in 1959.
  • Later in 1975, it became an autonomous organization, totally financed by Department of Culture.
  • Objective: to train students in all aspects of theatre, including theatre history, production, scene design, costume design, lighting, make-up, etc.
  • The training course at NSD is of three years duration.
  • It (renamed as Sanskar Rang Toli) was founded in 1989 and has been actively involved in production of plays for children, organizing summer theatre workshops in the schools of Delhi and also promoting children’s theatre through Saturday Club.
  • Since 1998, the School has organized National Theatre Festival for Children christened ‘Jashne Bachpan’ every year.
  • The first ever National Theatre Festival christened was held from March 18 to April 14, 1999 to commemorate the 50th year of India’s Independence has been made an annual feature.

Sahitya Akademi:

  • Sahitya Akademi, India’s National Academy of Letters promotes literature in 24 languages of India recognized by it.
  • It organizes programmes, confers Awards and Fellowships on writers in Indian languages and publishes books throughout the year and in 24 recognized languages.
  • Over the past six decades, the Akademi has published over 7000 books in 24 languages.
  • The Akademi publishes original works and also works in translation - fiction, poetry, drama and criticism covering classical, medieval, pre-modern and contemporary literature.
  • Sahitya Akademi publishes three journals, Indian Literature (bi-monthly in English), Samkaleena Bhartiya Sahitya (bi-monthly in Hindi) and Sanskrit Pratibha (quarterly in Sanskrit).
  • Head office- New Delhi, with offices in Kolkata, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Chennai.
  • Sahitya Akademi Award [the Award carries the prize money of ? 1 lakh and citation], awarded to the most outstanding book(s) of literary merit published in the 24 Indian languages recognized by the Akademi.
  • Bhasha Samman [the Award carries the prize money of ? 1 lakh and citation] is given to writers/ scholars / editors collectors/ performers / translators who have made a considerable contribution to the propagation and enrichment of languages.
  • The Akademi organizes Festival of Letters every year to celebrate Indian writing.       
  • It promotes Tribal and Oral Literature in the country through its Centre for Tribal and Oral   Literature in Delhi and North-East Centre for Oral Literature in Imphal.
  • Major projects- Monographs on Indian writers (MIL), encyclopaedias, anthologies, archives of Indian literature, national bibliography of Indian literature, encyclopaedia of Indian poetics and histories of Indian literature are some of the major projects undertaken by the Akademi.
  • Sahitya Akademi Library in New Delhi is one of the very few multilingual libraries which cater solely to literature. 

Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts(IGNCA):

  • It is a national level academic research centre encompassing the study and experience of all the arts, classical and folk, written and oral, ancient and modern.     
  • IGNCA is an autonomous trust under the Ministry of Culture.
  • The IGNCA has six functional unit:
    • Kalanidhi, the multi-form library;
    • Kalakosa, devoted mainly to the study and publication of fundamental texts in Indian languages;
    • Janapada Sampada, the division engaged in lifestyle studies;
    • Kaladarsana; the executive unit which transforms researches and studies emanating from the IGNCA into visible forms through the exhibition;
    • Cultural Informatics  Lab, which applies technology tools for cultural preservation and propagation;
    • Sutradhara, the administrative section that acts as a spine supporting and coordinating all the activities.

Centre for Cultural Resources and Training (CCRT):

  • It is one of the premier institutions working in the field of linking education with culture.
  • CCRT was set up in 1979 as an autonomous organization by the Government of India.         
  • Objectives: Revitalize the education system by creating an understanding and awareness among students about the plurality of the regional cultures of India and integrating this knowledge with education.  
  • It conducts a variety of training programmes for in-service teachers drawn from all parts of the country.
  • The training provides an understanding and appreciation of the philosophy, aesthetics and beauty inherent in Indian art and culture and focuses on formulating methodologies for incorporating a cultural component in curriculum teaching.
  • This training also stresses the role of culture in science and technology, housing, agriculture,          sports, etc.
  • It creates awareness amongst students and teachers of their role in solving environmental pollution problems and conservation and preservation of the natural and cultural heritage.
  • CCRT implements the Cultural Talent Search Scholarship Scheme, which provides scholarships to outstanding children in the age group of 10 to 14 years, studying either in recognized schools or belonging to families practicing traditional performing or other arts to develop their talent in various cultural fields, particularly in rare art forms.       

Zonal Cultural Centres:

  • Aim: To arouse awareness of the local culture and to show how these merge into zonal identities and eventually into the rich diversity of India’s composite culture.
  • The seven Zonal Centres were established under this scheme during 1985-86 at Patiala, Kolkata, Thanjavur, Udaipur, Allahabad, Dimapur and Nagpur.
  • Guru Shishya Parampara has been introduced to promote new talents.

Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat:

  • Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat was announced in 2015 on the occasion of the 140th Birth Anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
  • The broad objectives of the initiative are:-  
    • To celebrate the unity in diversity of our nation and to maintain and strengthen the fabric of traditionally existing emotional bonds between the people of our country;  
    • To promote the spirit of national integration through a deep and structured engagement between all states and union territories through a year-long planned engagement between states;
    • To showcase the rich heritage and culture, customs and traditions of either state for enabling people to understand and appreciate the diversity that is India, thus fostering a sense of common identity;
    • To establish long-term engagements;   
    • To create an environment which promotes learning between States by sharing best practices
    • and experiences.

Cultural Heritage of the Himalayas:

  • The aim of Buddhist Tibetan Institutions (BTI) is to help preserve, promote and propagate the intangible of Buddhist/Tibetan/Himalayan cultural heritage of the country.
  • Objective: To promote and preserve the cultural heritage of the Himalayas.
  • The scheme was revised in 2011.     
  • As per the revised scheme the grant shall be provided for undertaking the activities:             
    • Study and research on cultural heritage,
    • Preservation of old manuscripts, literature, art & crafts and documentation of cultural  activities/events like music, dance, etc.,       
    • Dissemination through audio-visual programmes of art and culture and Training in traditional and folk art in the states falling under the Himalayan Region i.e. Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh.        
  • The colleges and universities are also eligible to apply.

Cultural Heritage of the Himalayas

Development of Buddhist/ Tibetan Organization

  • Objective: To give financial assistance to the voluntary Buddhist/Tibetan organizations including monasteries engaged in the propagation and scientific development of Buddhist/ Tibetan culture and tradition and research in related fields.

Central Institute of Buddhist Studies(CISB)

  • CIBS, Leh Ladakh is formerly known as School of Buddhist  Philosophy was established at the behest of late Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru in 1959. 
  • The Institute has obtained the status of Deemed University in January, 2016.

Nava Nalanda Mahavihara

  • Established in 1951 in Nalanda, Bihar by the Government of Bihar.                      
  • An institution of postgraduate studies and research in Pali and Buddhism.
  • It is an autonomous institute under the Ministry of Culture and Accorded Deemed University status in 2006.

Central University of Tibetan Studies(Sarnath, Varanasi)

  • Established in 1967 with a view to educating the youths of Tibet and Indian students of Himalayan border areas.
  • Declared as a “Deemed to be University” in 1988.

Central Institute of Himalayan Culture Studies

  • Registered as a Society in 2010 under the Societies Registration Act, 1860.         
  • The area of operation of the Society shall be all over India.
  • The Institute undertakes undergraduate, postgraduate and doctoral programmes in Buddhist and Himalayan studies and may also establish and maintain feeder schools.

Archaeological Survey of India:

  • Established in 1861.
  • It functions as an attached office of the Ministry of Culture.               
  • Major activities:
    • Survey of archaeological remains and excavations;          
    • Maintenance and conservation of centrally protected monuments, sites and remains;  
    • Chemical preservation of monuments and antiquarian remains;
    • Architectural survey of monuments;      
    • Development of epigraphical research and numismatic studies;
    • Setting up and re-organization of site museums;              
    • Expeditions abroad;       
    • Training in archaeology;               
    • Publication of technical reports and research works.      
  • Under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act, 1958, the ASI has declared 3,686 monuments/sites to be of national importance in the country which includes twenty-one properties that are inscribed on the World Heritage List by UNESCO.       
  • Thanjavur (now commonly called as the Great Living Chola Temples) have been inscribed on the World Heritage List of UNESCO in 2004.
  • Nomination dossiers for the Victorian and Art Deco Ensemble of Mumbai have been sent to the World Heritage Centre for inscription on the World Heritage List of UNESCO.
  • Search, study and preservation of cultural heritage lying submerged in inland or territorial Waters are among the principal functions of the Underwater Archaeology Wing.
  • It carries out exploration and excavation in the Arabian Sea as well as in the Bay of Bengal.
  • The Epigraphy Branch at Mysore carries out research work in Sanskrit and Dravidian languages while the one at Nagpur carries out research work in Arabic and Persian.

National Mission on Monuments and Antiquities (NMMA):

  • Launched in 2007.
  • Objective: To prepare a National database on Built Heritage and Sites (BH&S) and antiquities from different sources and museums during the XIth Five Year Plan for information and dissemination to planners, researchers etc., and better management of such cultural resources.
  • As per recommendations of National Productivity Council in its 3rd Party Evaluation Report, NMMA has been made a Division of Archaeological Survey of India.
  • As part of the mandate, NMMA has to prepare two national registers viz., 
  1. National Register on Built Heritage and Sites
  2. National Register on Antiquities.

National Mission for Manuscripts:

  • Launched- 2003.
  • Nodal agency: Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts (IGNCA).
  • Objective: To reclaim India’s inheritance of knowledge contained in the vast treasure of manuscripts.
  • Major activities: Documentation of manuscripts through survey, conservation of manuscripts through preventive and curative methods, training courses and workshops on conservation-methods.

National Museum:

  • It functions as a subordinate office under the Ministry of Culture since 1960, houses over 2.6 lakh art objects dating from pre-historic era onwards.         
  • Main activities: exhibitions, reorganization/modernization of galleries, educational activities and outreach programmes, public relations, publications, photo documentation, summer holiday programmes, memorial lectures, museum corner, Photo unit, modelling unit, library, conservation laboratory and workshops.

National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA):

  • NGMA, New Delhi was founded in 1954 to promote and develop contemporary Indian Art.
  • It houses 17,858 works of art, representing about 1,748 contemporary Indian artists.             
  • The collection has been built up mainly by purchase and also by gift.

Indian Museum:

  • The eighth oldest Museum in the world houses almost 1.10 lakhs of artefacts telling the Oriental history and the heritage of India.
  • Sir William Jones as one of the profoundest scholars devoted his life to the service of India founded Asiatic Society in 1784.            
  • Dr. Nathanial Wallich, a Danish Botanist, wrote a letter to the Asiatic Society in which he strongly advocated the formation of a Museum at the premises of the Society.       
  • Thus a museum, under the guidance of Dr. Nathanial Wallich was established in 1814 at the cradle of the Asiatic Society.       
  • The museum was known in the beginning as the “Asiatic Society Museum” subsequently came to be known as the “Imperial Museum” and later familiarized as the “Indian Museum” which is more familiar by the name ‘Jadughar’ among the visitors.
  • The present building of the Indian Museum was completed in 1875.             
  • Multi-disciplinary objects have been displayed in its six sections viz, art, archaeology, anthropology, zoology, geology and botany.               


National Council of Science Museums (NCSM)

  • It is an autonomous body under the Ministry of Culture, is the largest network of science centres/museums in the world functioning under single administrative control.
  • It is primarily engaged in spreading the culture of science in the society especially among students with a motto of ‘Communicating Science to Empower People’ through its network of Science Centres spread across India.              
  • NCSM is the implementing agency for the Science City Scheme for developing new science centres in the country of national, regional and district level.
  • The concept of ‘Museum on Wheels’ was introduced in India in 1965 when the Mobile Science Exhibition (MSE) programme started as Mobile Science Museum (MSM) at Ramkrishna Mission School, Kolkata.
  • NCSM also facilitates the participation of Indian students in International Astronomy Olympiad (Junior category) every year by organising Orientation Cum Selection Camp and Pre Departure Training for selected students.   

Victoria Memorial Hall (VMH)

  • VMH Kolkata, was founded principally through the efforts of Viceroy Lord Curzon, in 1921 as a period museum in memory of Queen Victoria with particular emphasis on Indo-British history.
  • The VMH was declared an institution of national importance by the Government of India Act of 1935.
  • It is the premier period museum in India on Indo-British history in the eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth centuries.  
  • It also functions as the premier art gallery, museum, research library, and cultural space in Kolkata.
  • It has been widely hailed as the finest specimen of Indo-British architecture in India, and called the ‘Taj of the Raj.’
  • In 2017, the VMH has been recognized by Trip Advisor- the world’s largest travel and tourism-related website - as the no. 1 museum in India and the no 9 museums in Asia.
  • It’s rapidly rising global stature as a top tourist destination in India is also indicated by the award of Lonely Planet ‘Top Choice’ and ‘Fodor’s Choice’ ratings.   
  • The VMH is currently by far the most- visited museum in India and one of the top museums in the world in terms of footfall. 
  • In 2015, it was also named as the ‘Cleanest Monument in India,’ for which it bagged the India Today Safaigiri Award.

National Museum Institute of History of Art, Conservation and Museology

  • It is an autonomous organization, fully funded by the Ministry of Culture, established and declared as a Deemed University in 1989.               
  • This is the only Museum University in India.              

National Research Laboratory for Conservation of Cultural Property(NRLC)

  • NRLC was established in 1976, as a subordinate office of the Department of Culture and is recognized by the Department of Science and Technology as a scientific institution of the Government of India.
  • It provides conservation services and technical advise in matters concerning conservation to museums, archives, archaeology departments and other related cultural institutions, imparts training in different aspects of conservation.

Ramakrishna Mission Institute of Culture

  • The Institute was conceived in 1936 as one of the permanent memorials to Sri Ramakrishna (1836-1886) on the occasion of his first birth centenary.      
  • It was formally established in 1938 as a branch centre of the Ramakrishna Mission founded by Swami Vivekananda to propagate the message of Vedanta as propounded by Sri Ramakrishna.

Anthropological Survey of India:

  • It has been mandated to study the bio-cultural attributes of the Indian populations since its establishment, about 65 years before.
  • Over the decades, the An.S.I. grew from strength to strength to acquire An unparalleled blend of holistic perspective to study the human surface of the country.
  • The activities include collection, preservation, maintenance, documentation and study of ethnographic materials as well as ancient human skeletal remains.       
  • Of late, the Anthropological Survey of India went about an all-round modernization of its infrastructure to usher in the DNA technology to study the phylogenies of Indian populations, the anthropological genetics of diseases and the frontier areas of Anthropology.

National Archives of India:

  • It is the custodian of the non-current records of the Government of India and is holding them in trust for the use of the records creators and the users at large.        
  • It is the biggest repository of the non-current records in south-east Asia.    
  • NAI plays a key role in guiding and shaping the development of archives both at the national as well as international level.           
  • National Archives of India functions as an attached office of the Ministry of Culture entrusted with the preservation of the documentary heritage of the nation.
  • It is also the nodal agency for the implementation of the Public Records Act, 1993 and public records.



National Library


  • The National Library, Kolkata was originally known as the Imperial Library and was founded in 1891.    
  • After independence, the name of the Library was changed to the National Library.
  • It enjoys the status of an institution of national importance.


Central Secretariat Library

  • It is originally known as Imperial Secretariat Library, Kolkata was established in 1891.               
  • Since 1969 the library has been housed at Shastri Bhawan, New Delhi with a collection of over seven lakh documents mainly on social sciences and humanities.      
  • It is a depository of Indian official documents, central government and state government documents.

Nehru Memorial Museum and Library


  • It comprises a Museum on the life and times of Jawaharlal Nehru;
    • the research and publication division;
    • a library that has a pre-eminent position among the social science libraries in the country;
    • the oral history division;
    • the manuscripts division;
    • the centre for contemporary studies; the planetarium;
    • the Nehru learning centre for children and youth.           
  • The Archive is the biggest collections of private papers of individuals and institutions, especially from the freedom struggle.  

National Mission on Libraries

  • It has been set up by the Ministry of Culture, in 2012 in pursuance of National Knowledge Commission recommendations for sustained attention for the development of libraries and information science sector.
  • The purpose of the National Virtual Library of India is to facilitate a comprehensive database on digital resources on information about India and on information generated in India, in an open-access environment.

Performing Arts


Performing Arts Grants Scheme

  • This is the flagship scheme of the Ministry in the field of performing arts.
  • Under this scheme, financial assistance is provided to dramatic groups, theatre groups, music ensembles, children’s theatre and for all genres of performing arts activities.

Scheme for Cultural Organizations with National Presence

  • To promote and support cultural organizations with national presence involved in the promotion of art and culture throughout the country, this grant is given to such organizations which has a properly constituted managing body, registered in India having an all India character with national presence in its operation, adequate working strength and have spent ? 1 crore or more during 3 of the last 5 years on cultural activities.

Scheme of Building Grants

  • The objective of the scheme is to support voluntary cultural organizations and Government-aided cultural organizations to augment their efforts to create cultural space viz, auditorium, appropriately equipped training, rehearsal and performance spaces for artistes etc. and also for the purchase of equipment.

Tagore Cultural Complexes Scheme

  • It is a revived and revamped version of the erstwhile Multi-Purpose Cultural Complexes Scheme.            
  • It was renamed on the 150th Birth Anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore.       
  • Under this scheme, financial assistance is provided for the setting up of new cultural complexes of varying scales as also for modernization, renovation and up-gradation of existing Tagore auditoria etc., that were built in the 1960s and 1970s in various parts of the country to mark Tagore’s Birth Centenary.


Scheme of Pension to Artistes

  • Under this Scheme, financial assistance is granted to indigent artistes and Traditional scholars who have made significant contribution to art and letters and in their fields, etc., and their income (including income of the spouse) must not exceed ? 4,000/- per month and also their age should not be less than 60 years

Gandhi Heritage Sites Mission

  • In April, 2006, Government of India, constituted a Gandhi Heritage Sites Panel with eminent Gandhians.        
  • Based on the recommendation of the Panel the ‘Gandhi Heritage Sites Mission’with a fixed term of 5 years was created in 2013 with a total budget outla of ? 42 crores.
  • The period of Mission has been extended till March 2020.
  • The Mission’s mandate is to preserve for posterity the 39 core sites as well as Some important sites from the master list (consisting of 2000 sites visited by Mahtama Gandhi)


Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti


  • Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti was formed in 1984 by the merger of Gandhi Darshan at Rajghat and Gandhi Smriti, as an autonomous body, and is functioning under the financial support from the Ministry of Culture.       
  • The Prime Minister of India is its Chairperson and it has a nominated body of senior Gandhians and representatives of various government departments to guide it in its activities.         
  • The basic aim and objective of the Samiti is to propagate the life, mission and thought of Mahatma Gandhi through various socio-educational and cultural programmes.


Foreign Tourist Arrivals

  • During 2018 were 10.56 million (prov.) with a growth of 5.2 per cent over the same period of the previous year.

Special Tourism Zones

  • Creation of ‘Special Tourism Zones’ anchored on Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs) is in partnership with the states.      

Foreign Exchange Earnings

  • Foreign Exchange Earnings through Tourism (FEEs) during 2017 was ? 1,80,379 crore with a growth of 17 per cent over the same period of the previous year.

E-Visa facility

  • As in December 2018, e-visa facility has been extended to the nationals of 167 countries under sub-categories, i.e.—'e-Tourist visa’, ‘e-Business visa’, ‘e-Medical visa’, ‘eMedical Attendant visa’ and‘e-Conference visa’.             
  • During this period 2.4 million foreign tourists arrived on e-Tourist visa registering a growth of 39.6 per cent over the previous year.

Indian Culinary Institute

  • The Ministry of Tourism has set up the Indian Culinary Institute (ICI) at Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh.    
  • The first of its kind in India, the Institute has commenced its academic session from August, 2016.
  • The Ministry is also expanding the ICI, by opening its northern chapter at Noida.

Incredible India

  • The Ministry, as part of its ongoing promotional activities, releases campaigns in the international and domestic markets under the Incredible India brand line, to promote various tourism destinations and products of India to increase foreign tourist arrivals and domestic visits within the country.


  • Under PRASAD scheme, 25 sites of religious significance have been identified for development namely:
  • Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh), Amritsar (Punjab), Ajmer (Rajasthan), Ayodhya (Uttar Pradesh), Badrinath (Uttarakhand), Dwarka (Gujarat), Deoghar (Jharkhand), Belur (West Bengal), Gaya (Bihar), Guruvayoor (Kerala), Hazratbal (Jammu & Kashmir), Kamakhya (Assam), Kanchipuram (Tamil Nadu), Katra (Jammu & Kashmir), Kedarnath (Uttarakhand), Mathura (Uttar Pradesh), Patna (Bihar), Puri (Odisha), Srisailam (Andhra Pradesh), Somnath (Gujarat), Tirupati (Andhra Pradesh), Trimbakeshwar (Maharashtra), Ujjain (Madhya Pradesh), Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh) and Vellankani (Tamil Nadu).



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