Narendra Modi-Xi Jinping summit: Mamallapuram preparations at hectic pace

Chennai, Oct 3, 2019-

With Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping scheduled to meet at Mamallapuram near here from October 11 to October 13, the Tamil Nadu government is busy preparing the ground for the summit, including getting the Madras High Court’s sanction to put up welcome banners.

The state government had sought the court’s permission to put up welcome banners from the Chennai airport to Mamallapuram.

The court on Thursday, while permitting the state government to put up banners, said that they should not hinder the public.

On October 2, Chief Minister K. Palaniswami, Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam accompanied by top administrative and police officials visited Mamallapuram also known as Mahabalipuram and inspected the arrangements being made for the second India-China informal summit between Modi and Xi.

Mamallapuram, about 60 kms from here, is famous for its stone temples and stone carvings and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that has been brought under a security blanket with police personnel maintaining a strict vigil.

The authorities have already removed roadside shops in the locality and installed CCTV cameras at strategic locations.

The police have also advised the hotels and resorts to rent out rooms only to those having proper identification papers.

The residents have also been asked not to entertain guests till the summit gets over.

According to police, checks are being conducted at lodges and hotels and those who are staying without proper identification papers have been asked to vacate.

Senior police officials are making regular trips to Mamallapuram to check on the security arrangements.

Fishermen have been advised to keep away from the sea during the summit days.

The two leaders are also slated to visit the Shore Temple, Arjuna’s penance and the five ‘Pandava Rathas’.

Meanwhile, the roads are being relaid and the medians painted afresh.

Apart from the positive results of the talks between the leaders of the world’s two most populous nations, in-bound tourism to Mamallapuram is expected to increase as a result of the summit.

“Mamallapuram is already a UNESCO World Heritage Site famous of its stone carvings and stone temples. The India-China summit will bring this tourist spot under focus,” Yangya Prakash Chandran, founder and CEO, Crossway Hotels and Resorts, told IANS.

He said Modi himself recently said at a function at Indian Institute of Technology-Madras (IIT-M) he would visit Mamallapuram and also urged the people to start out on domestic tourism.

Chandran said Tamil Nadu is already a top inbound destination in the country.

Apart from stone carvings at Mamallapuram, the entire East Coast Road leading to the town is dotted with several places of tourist interest like the Crocodile Park, VGP Marine Kingdom and others.  (Agency)

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