New Delhi: Making efforts to revive the tourism industry in the state, the Himachal Pradesh government on Monday relaxed lockdown norms for tourists. Also Read - Himachal Pradesh Govt Revises Lockdown Guidelines, Makes E-Pass Mandatory For Travel; Here's Step-by-Step Guide to Apply

However, the stipulation of interstate e-movement passes will continue to be enforced but its issuance will be streamlined to avoid harassment to visitors. Also Read - As Himachal Pradesh Unlocks, 5 Hidden Gems in The State to Explore We Bet You Didn't Know About

The decision was taken during the cabinet meet of the state on Monday which was chaired by Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur. During the cabinet meeting, the state government also decided to reduce the minimum stay of the tourists to two days from five days. Also Read - COVID19: Check Latest Travel Guidelines For Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand And Karnataka

Moreover, the state government relaxed the norm for the tourists to bring along Covid-19 negative reports/certificates.

“Earlier, the Covid-19 negative report was not to be more than 72 hours old before the visits. Now, the time has been increased to 96 hours,” Urban Development Minister Suresh Bhardwaj said.

The state government has bought out the changes after reviewing the Central government’s latest guidelines on Unlock 3.

“No one can enter the state without an e-pass. All interstate movement will be monitored through the prevailing registration process. Any person keen to visit Himachal can enter his particulars on this software and he will get permission on priority,” he added.

The state’s tourist footfall last year increased to 172.12 lakh, including 3.83 lakh foreigners, from 164.50 lakh in 2018. The highest tourist arrival in 14 years was 196.02 lakh in 2017.

Himachal Pradesh recorded 106 fresh COVID-19 cases on Sunday, as the state’s infection tally surpassed 5,000.

Of the new cases, 34 were reported from Sirmaur, 27 from Solan, 17 from Kangra, 12 from Una, seven from Chamba, four from Hamirpur, two each from Mandi and Shimla and one from Kullu.