India Business
Kerala institute offers boat driving course
Jan 18, 2007 - 9:23:29 PM

Thiruvananthapuram, Jan 18 - Claimed to be the first institute in the country to give lessons on how to drive a motorboat and learn about its mechanism, Kerala State Shipping and Inland Navigation Corporation has invited applications for this new course.

'This is a six months course and anyone from the state who has passed Class 10 can enroll as a student. The entire fee of Rs.15,000 would be borne by the Kerala State Youth Welfare Board -, besides a stipend of Rs.1,000 a month,' State Minister for Youth M. Vijayakaumar told reporters here Thursday.

This course is going to be a boon to the money spinning tourism industry because the backwaters in the state are full of boats of various shapes and sizes to carry the tourists, but there is a shortage of experienced boat personnel.

Alappuzha alone accounts for nearly 400 houseboats and this segment of boat tourism has now caught the attention of tourism honchos in states like Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

'This course is going to be a great boon for the large number of unemployed in the state and we are working out several innovative schemes to tackle the unemployment problem in the state,' said Sreeramakrishnan, the new vice-chairman of the board.

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