Eyeing 20 million foreign tourists by 2020, the Union Tourism Ministry has decided to go for signage in foreign languages at major destinations.
"The culture and tourism go hand in hand. Hence, we have decided to put up sign boards at all ASI sites in the language of the largest foreign visitors," said Prahlad Singh Patel, Union Tourism and Culture Minister.
As part of the plan, the Ministry has installed sign boards in Sinhala, the language spoken by a majority of Sri Lankans, at Sanchi Stupa in Madhya Pradesh. The sign boards in Sinhala have been put up, after a survey indicated that over 30 lakh Sri Lankans visit the site. They are followed by about 3 lakh tourists from South Korea.
The Ministry is also planning to put up sign boards in Sinhala, Japanese and Korean at places, like Sarnath in UP and Bodh Gaya in Bihar, which are frequented by large numbers of tourists from Sri Lanka, Japan and South Korea.
"This will help in raising foreign tourists' numbers," Patel said. "It will help foreign tourists understand the history and importance of the monument easily," a Tourism Ministry official said.