Expressing concern over the impact of the deaths of two Russian tourists in the Rayagada district, the Hotel and Restaurant Association of Odisha (HARO) wrote to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik urging him to ensure a proper investigation.
In a letter to Patnaik, it said that a strong action plan should be chalked out for the safety and security of visitors, especially foreign tourists, coming to the state during the Hockey Men's World Cup, which will begin on January 13.
"We request your esteemed office to kindly examine the case of two Russian tourists who died under mysterious circumstances and necessary steps and investigation may kindly be taken immediately to avoid further spreading of the negative news," HARO chairman JK Mohanty said in the letter.
Noting that the deaths of the two tourists were having a negative impact on the prospects of tourism in Odisha in terms of safety, he said the incident is likely to slow down the arrival of foreign tourists to the state.
Prior to the pandemic, Odisha witnessed around 1.5 lakh foreign tourist arrivals each year, Mohanty said.
The state CID has stepped up its investigation into the deaths of Pavel Antov (65), a Russian lawmaker who died after allegedly falling from a Rayagada hotel's third floor on December 24, and Vladimir Bidenov, his fellow traveller who was found dead in his room at the same hotel on December 22.
They were part of a four-member group, which along with their Delhi-based travel guide Jitendra Singh had checked in to the hotel on December 21.
The post-mortem report of the Russian MP indicates that he died of internal injury after a fall, while that of Bidenov points to a heart attack as the cause of death, police said.
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