Jharcraft with its Midas touch will now lend a hand to the state government to boost rural tourism and in the process, churn out livelihood options for the local populace.
One of the few successful state-run corporations, the entity is set to float a new venture, Jharcraft Rural Tourism and Livelihood Private Limited, which will soon sign an MoU with the tourism department for maintaining posh hospitality addresses in Betla, Ghatshila, Madhupur and near Hirni falls.
It will be a win-win situation for both parties as Jharcraft will set up emporiums at these wayside facilities along national and state highways to tap tourists and travellers.
According to sources, the corporation will spend around Rs 15 lakh annually for the upkeep of the amenities developed by the tourism department.
“A few months ago, the tourism department floated a tender, inviting bidders for maintenance of wayside amenities and jungle huts in different parts of the state. We showed interest and are floating a company that will take up the job,” Jharcraft managing director Dhirendra Kumar said.
This is not all.
Jharcraft will also host trips to weaving clusters and sericulture plants to educate tourists on handicraft products. Weaving clusters at Phukhrikala, Daru and Betla — a hub of traditional carpet makers — have always drawn visitors.
The initiative, Kumar added, would help Jharcraft promote products made by local artisans and spread good word about Jharkhand. “In this way, we will connect our rural artisans with people living outside and help generate more revenues,” the MD said.
According to Kumar, the entire process — registering the new company and signing the MoU — would be completed within a month. “The deal will be for 10 years. We will ensure a great ambience, proper maintenance and top-notch services to attract tourists,” he said.
Jharkhand Tourism Development Corporation (JTDC) managing director Sunil Kumar confirmed the development.
“The MoU will be signed by the end of this month. Work on the project will start at the earliest. The tourist season has begun and we want to make most of it,” he added.