Secretary at the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation (MoCTCA), Dinesh Kumar Thapaliya, has asked tourism entrepreneurs in Thamel to bring a proposal for the overall development of the tourist hotspot in Kathmandu Valley.
Speaking at an interaction entitled ‘Thamel after Earthquake’ organized by Thamel Tourism Development Council (TTDC), Thapaliya asked the entrepreneurs to determine standards for the development of Thamel within eight to ten days and forwarded the proposal to the ministry.
“To develop and promote Thamel, we can implement various programs like Ujyalo Thamel to light up the area round the clock and organize Thamel Mahotsav to attract domestic tourists, among others, as proposed by the private sector. The government is ready to work with the private sector for this,” Thapaliya said, adding that TTDC should work toward ensuring security of tourists and cleanliness of area as well as focus on information dissemination.
According to entrepreneurs, Thamel has been suffering even though only 15 percent of the area has been damaged by the earthquake. Stating that tourism business in Thamel has dropped by more than 90 percent, Rajendra Sapkota, board member of Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) said Thamel should target Nepalis in this lean period. “I propose tourism entrepreneurs to celebrate a three-day Thamel Mahotsav every year like the ones organized by entrepreneurs in Pokhara and Chitwan. It will encourage people from other parts of the country to visit Thamel,” he added. Sapkota also said he would try to allocate budget for the development of Thamel in the plans and programs of NTB for this fiscal year.
Ram Sharan Thapaliya, president of TTDC, underlined the need to regulate vehicular traffic in Thamel, install solar panels to light up Thamel, install CCTV system, set up information center, and build public toilets. “We also need to regular massage parlous and find solution to the problem of third genders and street children,” he added.