Discover Bihar – Bihar is luring outsiders to come and discover the new Bihar themselves, the real portrait of Bihar. A whooping sum of around Rs 200 crore is expected to be brought in the next 2 – 3 years by private players to develop tourism.
The State’s biggest attraction continues to be link to Buddha’s life, which is attracting tourists within the country and from countries such as Sri Lanka, Japan and Bhutan.
Around 4 lakh foreign tourists arrived in Bihar in December only for Kalchakra celebration marking Buddha’s 2006th year of enlightenment. This was compared to 6 lakh for the entire 2010.
1.32 crore tourists, including 5.27 lakh foreign tourists, visited the State between January and November 2011. Of the total foreign tourists, nearly 30 per cent are from Sri Lanka who use Chennai as the transit point to visit Bihar.
To boost tourism, the State government has accorded industry status to tourism to attract private investment. Investments are eligible for subsidies and tax incentives.
The government’s focus is to develop basis infrastructure for tourism. This includes an international standard airport and accommodation, seamless road and rail infrastructure to tourist spots and site, telecommunication and electricity supply.
Some of the major destinations promoted by Bihar include Bodhgaya (Buddha’s enlightenment sites), Gaya (final salvation point for the Hindus), Nalanda (ruins of world’s first university for higher education), Pawapur (Lord Mahavir’s Nirvana site), Rajgir (kingdom of Magadh), Vaishali (site for last sermon delivery by Lord Buddha), Vikramsila (centre for Tantric Buddhishm) and Kesariya (where Budha delivered his famous Kalama Sutta).