India and the Maldives are in an undiplomatic tussle made out of creating issues out of nothing. But in hindsight, it does point out that all row was a product of a simmering hatred.
The battle on social media – cyberspace – gave a thorough thrashing to the Maldives.
But fortunately, Lakshadweep has been promoted in the process. Can Lakshadweep meet Maldives and compete with Maldives and its brand? Can it match its infrastructure and aura?
Lakshadweep is India’s smallest Union Territory, a strategically located archipelago of 36 islands off the southwestern coast of India with beautiful islands in the Arabian Sea. It holds immense strategic significance for India. With its strategic location in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR), Lakshadweep plays a crucial role in India’s maritime security and defence strategy. The islands serve as a natural barrier, protecting India’s western coast and as a surveillance point for monitoring naval activities in the region. Additionally, the presence of these islands strengthens India’s control over vital sea lanes of communication, ensuring safe passage for trade and oil supplies. Furthermore, these islands serve as a strategic base for Indian naval operations in the Arabian Sea.
How is Lakshadeep placed?
It is close to India’s neighbour, the Maldives, making it easily accessible to domestic and international tourists. The Maldives is known for its luxurious resorts and stunning underwater scenery. Despite its small size, Lakshadweep offers many attractions, including pristine beaches, vibrant marine life, and unique cultural experiences.
There are several similarities between Lakshadweep and Maldives. They are geologically, morphologically, origin-related, species and fauna related to people, and religious and Islamic outlook towards the world.
Lakshadweep’s restricted areas policy ensures that the delicate ecosystem of the ten inhabited islands remains protected from over-tourism. This approach allows genuine tourists to experience the region’s beauty while minimising any negative environmental impact.
The airport in Agatti offers helicopter transfers to Kavaratti Island. The remote islands provide a peaceful and pristine getaway for holidaymakers.
With its breathtaking natural beauty, Lakshadweep has long been considered a potential world-class tourist destination for India.
FROM A TOURIST PERPECTIVE LAKHS IS NEW UNEXPLORED PRISTINE NON BORING…(which the toutists get easily) and that can give a major advantage over Maldives
How easy or difficult is it to develop into a world-class tourist destination?
Developing Lakshadweep, India’s natural gem, as a world-class tourist destination is no easy feat, and it requires careful planning, strategic investments, and a deep understanding of the location’s unique geographical and environmental characteristics.
With its diverse landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and ancient historical sites, the country has all the ingredients to become a world-class tourist destination. However, transforming this potential into reality requires careful planning, strategic investments, and a comprehensive infrastructure development and promotion approach.
India’s natural beauty and diverse landscapes make it an ideal destination for tourism. With its vast coastline and breathtaking islands, it has the potential to develop world-class tourist destinations. Lakshadweep, a group of stunning coral islands in the Arabian Sea, is one such place.
Lakshadweep, viewed as India’s natural treasure, has the potential to become a world-class tourist destination. With its pristine beaches, coral reefs, unique marine biodiversity, and picturesque landscapes, it has all the ingredients to attract travellers from across the globe. It holds great promise as a world-class tourist destination.
However, developing Lakshadweep into a tourist hotspot has come with challenges and considerations due to its remote location and fragile ecosystem, despite its natural beauty.
Due to limited infrastructure and connectivity, Lakshadweep has struggled to capitalise on its tourism potential fully.
With its rich potential, Lakshadweep has all the ingredients to become a world-class tourist destination. However, transforming this potential into reality requires careful planning, strategic investments, and a comprehensive infrastructure development and promotion approach.
The government is now working to develop the necessary amenities and improve transportation links. Efforts are being made to balance promoting tourism and preserving the natural beauty and biodiversity of the islands.
What has the government been doing for Lakshadeep?
Several initiatives have been taken in recent years to attract tourists and improve the islands’ infrastructure. The Ministry of Tourism has been working closely with the local administration to identify and address the challenges faced by the tourism industry in Lakshadweep. Various projects have been implemented to enhance island connectivity, such as introducing regular flights and developing better transportation facilities. Additionally, efforts have been made to promote eco-tourism and preserve the island’s fragile ecosystem. The government has also encouraged private sector investments in the hospitality industry, establishing regional luxury resorts and hotels. These measures have helped boost the tourism sector in Lakshadweep and attract a more significant number of tourists to the islands.
Implementing the Lakshadweep Tourism Policy aims to attract domestic and international tourists to the islands. Under this policy, various infrastructure projects have been undertaken, including constructing new resorts, improving transportation facilities, and enhancing tourist amenities. The government has also focused on promoting eco-tourism in Lakshadweep, aiming to preserve the delicate ecosystem of the islands while providing sustainable livelihood opportunities for the local communities. These efforts have increased the visibility of Lakshadweep as a tourist destination and generated employment opportunities and economic growth for the region.
However, despite these initiatives, challenges persist, and the government must address them effectively to unlock the full potential of Lakshadweep as a world-class tourist destination.
Challenges in developing Lakshadweep.
There are several other issues besides limited infrastructure, more connectivity, and the delicate ecological balance.
Both Lakshadweep and the Maldives are small islands with a predominantly Muslim population. Both rely on tourism as a significant source of income. While the Maldives has successfully established itself as a popular tourist destination, the presence of local jihadists in Lakshadweep, who are in solidarity with the Maldivians, potentially hinders its ability to compete effectively with the Maldives. They may resort to destabilisation, driven by extremist ideologies, posing a significant challenge to the region’s progress. It may hinder its ability to compete effectively with the Maldives in attracting visitors and maintaining a peaceful environment for tourism.
To address this issue, authorities must implement adequate security measures to combat these threats. By doing so, the destination can ensure the safety of its tourists and enhance its reputation as a secure and desirable travel destination.
Addressing other challenges requires investments in infrastructure development, such as improving transportation and accommodation options, to enhance accessibility for tourists. Additionally, implementing sustainable practices and regulations can help protect the fragile ecosystem of Lakshadweep while still attracting visitors.
What is the most sustainable plan for Lakshadweep?
Some possible government initiatives and policies to promote tourism in Lakshadweep could include investing in sustainable infrastructure, such as eco-friendly accommodations and transportation options, implementing strict regulations to protect the islands’ delicate ecosystems, and collaborating with local communities to develop responsible tourism practices.
Improving the islands’ infrastructure and addressing connectivity issues would be crucial to attracting more tourists to Lakshadweep. This could involve upgrading transportation facilities, such as airports and ports, to ensure smooth travel experiences for visitors. Additionally, investing in reliable internet and communication networks would enhance connectivity and enable tourists to stay connected while exploring the islands. The only way tourism can actually sustain and thrive is making it high end as the most exclusive destination on the planet with a lifestyle and enjoyment package unique extraordinary and exceptional.
Preserving the ecological balance and ensuring sustainability in tourism development is essential for the long-term viability of Lakshadweep as a tourist destination. This could involve implementing strict regulations to protect the fragile marine ecosystem, promoting responsible tourism practices, and supporting local communities in adopting sustainable livelihoods.
India can stand out with its experience of managing 13 different types of islands; India can have a 100% ecocentric approach, with bamboo construction, aided by Gadkari style driven swiftness of actions, with an additional advantage being proximity to western coastal India, with an attendant ability to develop an ecosystem that is connected to Indian coastal region,
Its imaginable what a bikini clad Mumbai’s divas walking on the sand ridges oozing independence can do to Lakshadweep and isn’t that India has too many of them to walk on them during sunset.
Additionally, as a new step each of the atolls can be branded differently in terms of its architecture brand ambassadors food cuisine…a new venture the world has not known. India can develop a specific theme-based tourism culture based on the lives of different Pacific and Atlantic islands, which has yet to be done anywhere. Moreover, If India wants to brand and develop Lakshadweep as a high-end destination, it is the only country that can manage it as well as India.
Of course, Environmentalists’ and local communities’ concerns are significant because they help preserve the island’s delicate ecosystem. The government needs to find a middle ground that allows for sustainable development while respecting the region’s unique cultural and ecological heritage.
Only through such efforts can Lakshadweep genuinely become a world-class tourist destination where visitors can experience the beauty of nature while contributing to the well-being of the local communities.
K. Siddhartha is one of the rare breeds of polymath, having wide scale, in-depth knowledge, and command over many domains and subjects.
His range includes Astrophysics, Space Science, the entire Earth Sciences, Experiential Economics, Civilization and Sanatan economics, Nature-Centred Development, Geography and Geopolitics, Perception Management, and Cultural Heritage.
His diverse domain knowledge and ability to integrate them have made him a strategic thinker, knowledge and perception management consultant, and advisor to several international and state governments. He assists policy making at the national and International level in creating and developing narratives that integrating core and critical Bharatiya values across domains of Science, Heritage, Economics, Geopolitics using AI and Perception Management to build strategy for a Bharatiya perspective of Vishva Guru oriented new world order.
He has written books on a wide range of subjects—49 books to date. Apart from that, he has been a mentor to 1600 civil servants, film personalities, entrepreneurs, and policymakers.