Nagaland may become off-road capital of the world. Here's the low down
Obstacles may seldom emerge as opportunities and a case in point is what Nagaland hopes to achieve through its challenging terrain and rather bad state of public roads. As per a report in news agency PTI, the state in the eastern part of India is looking at emerging as a major hub for off-road tourism and is eying a potential annual revenue of ₹100 crore through it.
According to the report, the Nagaland state government is all set to promote off-road driving as part of a planned activity and because there is little to no investment required - the terrain is believed to allow for such events, it could be a plan with a lot of promise. "We want to make Nagaland the off-road capital of the world. We have good roads for off-roading and need virtually no investment in terms of infrastructure. All we need is to build capacities in villages. Once it's operational, it has the potential to generate ₹100 crore revenue annually," I Kitto Zhimomi, Commissioner and Secretary Tourism, Government of Nagaland, was quoted as saying.
But off-roading events isn't just about bringing a vehicle and driving or riding it for that burst of adrenaline. It would also require logistics. "We have to target homesteads in villages, raise funds for clean toilets and clean linens, that's it. We don't want volumes, we want the niche traveller to visit and experience off-roading," said Zhimomi.
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The Nagaland state government is drawing inspiration from something similar that has been taking place in South Dakota's Sturgis city in the United States. It is cited that the city manages to earn a revenue of around $800 million through off-road events and that it sustains the the livelihoods of 10,000 people through a 10-day motorcycle festival.
And Nagaland wants something similar. It is reported that dedicated circuits are currently being curated and routes are being identified in a tie-up with Google.