The Punjab Tourism Department has announced plans to create a new policy to promote heritage tourism.

Punjab governor VP Singh Badnore and tourism and cultural affairs minister Navjot Singh Sidhu recently held talks with the Indian Heritage Hotels Association (IHHA). The tourism departments of Chandigarh and Haryana also attended the meeting.

The IHHA urged the Punjab government to vacate occupied heritage buildings to convert them into museums and hotels, as in Europe. Emphasising on the promotion of Indus Valley Civilization assets, the association also urged Haryana to tap its tourism potential.

Sidhu said he was keen to promote cultural and heritage tourism. He added,“Palaces, forts and old havelies could be converted into heritage tourism assets.”

He also stated that his department will seek views of the state’s youth before finalising the cultural policy. Presiding over a meeting of experts from art, literary, academic and cultural spheres to fine tune the proposed policy, he said it would be finalised by June-end.