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Session 4 - 2024

Friday, 24th of May

4:00 PM - 7:30 PM (Bucharest Time)

National Agency for Mountain Areas - ANZM

Mountain Amphitheater

Language: English

Chairs: Dr. Adam CZARNECKI (Poland), Dr. Cristina Emanuela DASCĂLU (Romania)

Iqbal Ahmad BHAT, Assistant Professor, Department of Tourism and Travel Studies, Berhampur University, Odisha, Berhampur, India

Nazish Hena KHAN, Assistant Professor, Department of Journalism, Bharati College, University of Delhi, West Delhi, India

Rural Tourism and Heritage Conservation: A Case Study of Raghurajpur Village in Odisha, India

Raghurajpur is a heritage village in the Puri district of Odisha in the eastern part of India. The village is famous for palm leaf manuscripts, pattachitra paintings, and stone carvings. The village has been recognized by the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India as "Best Tourism Village" in 2023 under the silver category. It is the only village in India where all the households are engaged in handicrafts and paintings with natural colours. The Odisha Tourism Department in association with local artisans organizes local festivals known as "Haats" to increase the participation of the community for equitable distribution of tourism benefits. Tourism has benefited more than five hundred community members by providing them with direct employment, while almost two hundred people have benefited indirectly. There have been ample opportunities for women and self-help groups to participate in handicraft production and marketing of manufactured goods. The economy of the local community has multiplied through inbound tourism in Raghurajpur village. The local people engage with tourists by providing accommodation in a traditional cultural setting with immersive local culture. Against this background, the present study highlights the importance of rural tourism in a heritage setting through the participation of the local community. The study is based on both primary as well as secondary sources of data. The primary information source is based on the researcher’s visits to the study site and interaction with the local artisans and community people. It is found that village tourism at Raghurajpur offers a unique opportunity for guest–host interaction while experiencing the authentic culture in its rural space.

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