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Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) has recently conducted a survey entitled "Survey of Indian Visitors to Nepal by Land 2009."
The survey makes an attempt to add to the current streams of data on the Indian tourist arrivals to Nepal providing valuable support to tourism industry, policy makers and planners, read a press statement released by the NTB.
The survey has come out with the number of Indian tourists entering Nepal in 2009 from eight major entry points along Nepal-India border.
So far, the tourism statistics included only the Indian tourists entering Nepal by air and third country tourists entering by air and overland, completely excluding the Indian tourists entering Nepal through the various entry points along Nepal-India broader, the statement said.
As Indian tourists entering Nepal via land are not required to register or go through frontier formalities, the large number of Indian tourists visiting Nepal via land has never been accounted in the available tourist arrivals data.
Based on the estimates made in the survey, 429,455 tourists have entered Nepal from India using various means of surface transportation.
The survey excludes those crossing the border on foot and continuing the journey into Nepal from India on Nepali vehicles.
With the assumption in the survey that only Indians crossing the border by vehicle are to be counted as tourists and also taking into account the third country tourists, it has been estimated that there were at least 298,821 Indian tourists coming to Nepal via land in the year 2009. The number of third country tourists entering into Nepal from India was 130,634, according to the statement.
This survey estimated the number of Indian tourists visiting Nepal through the eight border points along Nepal-India: Birgunj, Kakarbhitta, Rani (Biratnagar), Belihiya (Bhairawa), Nepalgunj, Dhangadi, Janakpur (Vittamod), Gaddachowki (Mahendranagar) for an overnight stay or longer. However, it does not include the data of Indian tourists entering Nepal through Tatopani (Kodari) entry point. nepalnews.com