Karnataka Tourism Minister CT Ravi on Wednesday hinted at the government permitting opening of
gyms, fitness centres and golf courses after May 17 when the third phase of the COVID-19 induced lockdown comes to an end.
"Today I met the Chief Minister and discussed opening of fitness centres, golf courses and giving permission for hotels to provide service... to encourage revival of tourism at local
level while maintaining social distancing," he told reporters.
Stating that sportspersons' fitness will take a hit if fitness centres are not opened, the Minister, who also holds the sports portfolio, said following the request by several of them, he brought it to the notice of the Chief Minister, who responded positively.
"CM has said we will give permissions to open gyms after May 17, while ensuring all safety precautions.
Also, golf is something where distance is usually maintained, they (golfers) too had come and submitted an appeal. I brought it to the notice of CM...we will give permission, ensuring safety," he added.
With all tourism activities having come to a standstill and all bookings cancelled, following the coronavirus-driven lockdown, the tourism department is focusing on promoting local tourism with the concept of "Love Your Native".
Ravi said he had drawn the Chief Minister's attention to a "survival and revival" plan for the tourism sector and added that the mindset will have to change towards "Love Your Native" concept, aimed at encouraging local tourism.
"Then comes inter-district with the concept 'Nodu baa Nammura' (Come, See Our City). After that we will consider inter-state and international tourists, while maintaining safety and hygiene," he said.
"We are also waiting for a central package. We expect tourism will get boost from it," he added.