As the Commonwealth Games are approaching near, the tourism ministry of Delhi is working towards upgradation of the budget hotels in the city’s Paharganj and Karol Bagh area, to meet the demand of accommodation during these games. The ministry has decided to upgrade 11,000 rooms in some 500 hotels and lodges in the two areas. However, before this upgradation, the power ministry will work on cleaning the tangled mesh of cable TV, internet and telephone wires on every electric pole therein. The tourism ministry is also dealing with the squalor around these busy areas. Once these tasks are over, the up-gradation work will start.
Kulanand Joshi, DTTDC General Manager, said that the budget hotels in Delhi could gain recognition in this process and expand their business, as the department would be putting them in A, B or C category, depending upon services and facilities provided by them. The Category B and C hotels will not be recommended to international tourists. It is well known that many of the hotels in Delhi’s Paharganj and Karol Bagh area do not fulfill the required standards and are in a very bad condition. The hoteliers in these areas welcomed the upgradation move and see it as an opportunity to improve their business prospects.
Naresh Kumar, Director of the Shiva Intercontinental Hotel (three-star) in Paharganj, said that the government was helping them to prepare for the games, by providing better civic infrastructure. Even their staff is getting training at the Pusa Institute for Hotel Management. Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) has released a huge sum, of Rs. 6 billion, for development project. Such a whooping budget is set mainly because of the proximity of these areas to Delhi Railway station and Delhi Metro, which would connect central Delhi to the Indira Gandhi International Airport. Union Tourism Minister Kumari Selja has instructed officials of her ministry to expedite the work as 30,000 additional hotel rooms were required in and around Delhi for the Games. She has set June 2010 as a time limit for completion of any hotel project coming up for Commonwealth Games.