New Delhi, April 3: Intertiol travel advisories against India are “hugely biased” and “uncalled for” because crime and violent incidents in the country are only “few and far between”, says Union Tourism Minister K.J. Alphons. In an interview with IANS at his office, the minister asserted India was a “perfectly safe” tourist destition for foreigners and the government was making efforts to get negative advisories against the country removed.
“Most of these advisories are hugely biased. I don’t want to use the word racially biased. Like the advisory for Assam is still on Level 2. Why? Such advisories are completely uncalled for,” he said. Alphons said the Exterl Affairs Ministry had been taking up the issue with various countries and of course Prime Minister rendra Modi’s global diplomacy was the “best message” that painted India as a safe place. “You know incidents are deplorable but they are so few and far between. The issue is that the (foreign) media is hugely biased (against India).”
The remarks came against the backdrop of the US and other western countries repeatedly asking their citizens to exercise caution in their travels India due to reported incidents of crime and violence. The US in January reviewed its advisories placing India on Level 2 and suggesting increased caution. Cada also issued its updated travel advisory on March 21 asking citizens to “exercise a high degree of caution in India due to a continuing threat of terrorist attacks throughout the country at all times”.
The UK in its February 21, 2018, dated advisory suggested a high degree of caution as “terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in India” and asked the British to “be vigilant” in the wake of “an increased threat to places visited by British tiols such as religious sites, markets, festival venues and beaches”. (IANS)