Government to provide free preloaded BSNL SIM cards to tourists with e-visas
In a bid to make the stay smoother for the foreign tourists when they arrive in India, the government has planned to give free pre-loaded sim cards provided by Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited to the tourists travelling with e-visa.
The sim cards will have Rs.50, a net data of 50 MB preloaded on it and also a customer service in 12 languages.
Union Minister Manish Sharma says, “It will facilitate the foreign tourists in communicating with their acquaintances immediately after they land in India,” Sharma said.
He added, “Also, they can get information in their own language using our 24×7 Tourist Helpline, which provides service in 12 foreign languages. A Russian-speaking or Japanese speaking tourist can use the helpline easily.”
Union Tourism Minister Manish Sharma, who launched the service, is confident that this would prove to be a successful one.
Tourism Secretary Vinod Zutshi hinted at the possibility of the extension of this service to other types as well which is now restricted to e-visa holders.
The service would be available only at Indira Gandhi International airport in the beginning, but the remaining 15 international airports will be updated in time.
Tourists from 161 countries can avail e-visas on which the free SIM card is available. According to the sources, 10 lakh e-visas were issued in 2016.