Sikkim groups seeks permits for visitors

Inner Line Permit
Gangtok: The apolitical Nationalist Sikkim United Organisation (NSUO) on Tuesday iterated its demand for the introduction of Inner Line Permit (ILP) in the state to check the influx of people from outside, but tourism stakeholders sounded an alarm, saying this could have a negative impact on the industry.
Tshering Wangchuk Lepcha, the coordinator of the NSUO, said the introduction of ILP would put in place a system to check influx.
"It is very important to introduce ILP to prevent influx of people from outside to Sikkim. Migration is a known fact, but there has to be a system to check it," he said, while speaking at a function to observe "Samjhauta Diwas" to commemorate the signing of the tripartite treaty by India, the Chogyal of Sikkim and political parties of Sikkim on May 8, 1973.
The ILP is an official travel document issued by the Centre to allow inward travel of an Indian citizen into certain areas for a limited period.
It is obligatory for Indian citizens from outside those states to obtain an entry permit.
At present, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and Mizoram are the three states where ILP is in operation.
Tourism stakeholders in Sikkim, however, feared the introduction of any measure that would hamper the hassle-free entry of tourists to the state could have a negative impact on tourism.
"There are already restrictions in place for movement of tourists, especially foreigners, in the state. Even domestic tourists are required to take special passes to visit certain areas. Now, if ILP requires entry passes for every visitor to Sikkim, it would obviously have a negative impact. A wrong message will go across," said Gopal Chhetri, the secretary of the Travel Agents Association of Sikkim (TASS).
Sikkim receives almost 15 lakh tourists annually, and the government plans to double the figure in the next few years. The tourism sector was hit hard last year because of the agitation in the Darjeeling hills.
Sikkim receives a large number of visitors from the neighbouring Bengal and most of them are from Calcutta.

The Telegraph
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The apolitical Nationalist Sikkim United Organisation (NSUO) on Tuesday iterated its demand for the introduction of Inner Line Permit (ILP) in the state to check the influx of people from outside, but tourism

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