Hotels, resorts cancel accommodations till Apr. 20
Madikeri: To contain the spread of COVID-19, the Kodagu District Administration has banned the entry of tourists and the general public to places of tourist interest.
Deputy Commissioner (DC) Charulata Somal issued an order last evening and has prohibited the entry of tourists until Apr. 20. She said any violation of her order was punishable under the Disaster Management Act, 2005, and the Karnataka Epidemic Diseases Act, 2020.
Kodagu has become the first district in Karnataka to ban the entry of tourists in the wake of second wave hitting the State with increased number of positive cases. With a sharp surge in cases reported from across the State, the directive brings back the memories of 2020 restrictions on inter-district movement.
The entry of visitors and tourists to Raja’s Seat, Mandalpatti, Talacauvery, Bhagamandala, Abbey and Irpu Falls, Rajara Gaddige in Madikeri, Dubare Elephant Camp and Cauvery Nisargadhama has been banned. Following the ban, all resorts, homestays are cancelling their bookings till Apr. 20.
A large number of tourists had booked accommodations including dormitories for the series of holidays during Ugadi and weekend next week. Now, all those are being cancelled and refunds are being issued to those tourists who have paid in advance.
“Without tourist spots there is no point in tourists staying in hotels and resorts. The DC’s ban will be a huge blow to us as our businesses were just looking up after the lockdown and subsequent tourist cancellations,” Sabeel, Proprietor of Castle Continental Hotel in Kushalnagar told Star of Mysore.
Following the DC’s orders, the main gates of Cauvery Nisargadhama and Dubare Elephant Camp have been shut and Whitewater River Rafting at Dubare has been cancelled. The Golden Temple at Bylakuppe Tibetan Camp has also been closed till June 11.
Meanwhile, Mysuru DC Rohini Sindhuri has clarified that there is no proposal of closing tourist places in Mysuru. “We are strictly following all COVID norms imposed by the Government. However, there is no proposal to close down tourist spots in Mysuru. We have got directions from the Chief Minister in this regard. The tourism industry has already suffered under severe losses due to lockdown and we cannot afford to close the tourist spots as many livelihoods are dependent on the industry,” she said.