Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Delhi set to launch helpline for tourists

To give tourists visiting the capital during the Commonwealth Games-2010 a helping hand in dealing with harassment of any kind or to provide information about various things, the Delhi government is coming up with a 24-hour helpline.

The helpline is likely to have the number 111.
According to government officials, the helpline will not only be of help when tourists face problems at the hands of a tout or an autorickshaw driver, it will also help the person in question get a fair idea about the Games venues, places where he can find accommodation, information about cultural programmes and other related information.

A request has been made to the authorities concerned to allot the number 111 as the helpline number as it is easy to remember and dial. The helpline will also disseminate information about various departments of the city government, as well as about its e-governance programmes.
The information technology department, which is working on the project, is hoping to make the helpline operational in time for the Games.

The tendering process has already been set in motion and a good response during the pre-tendering meeting has made the department hopeful of successful launch of the helpline by early October when the Games begin.
Further, even after the Games are over, the service will continue and provide help to tourists or other visitors to the capital.

Though the Union tourism ministry has been running programmes to teach the autorickshaw drivers mannerisms and skills to deal with the tourists without harassing the latter, the programme has not been received with enthusiasm by a large number of autorickshaw drivers.

Given that the autorickshaw drivers in the capital generally tend to take the tourists for a ride, such a helpline would come in handy in preventing tourists from complaining about basic services, said an official.

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