The holistic development of identified Islands in the country has been taken up by NITI Aayog. The final Site Potential Development Report has been prepared for four islands in Andaman & Nicobar (A&N) namely Smith, Ross, Long and Aves Islands and five islands in Lakshadweep namely Minicoy, Bangaram, Thinnakara, Cheriyam and Suheli Islands. Tourism based projects have been identified in Long, Aves, Smith and Neil Islands of A&N and Minicoy, Kadamat and Suheli Islands of Lakshadweep while according priority to air and sea connectivity and the construction of airport at Minicoy in Lakshadweep by the Indian Air Force.
The Ministry of Tourism has also sanctioned a project for Rs. 42.19 Crore during 2016-17 for Development of Coastal Circuit (Long Island-Ross Smith Island- Neil Island- Havelock Island- Baratang Island-Port Blair) in Andaman & Nicobar under the Coastal thematic circuit of Swadesh Darshan Scheme for development of island tourism in the country.
Islands Development Agency (IDA) has been constituted on 1st June, 2017 under the Chairmanship of the Home Minister, Government of India to oversee the comprehensive development of Islands. Further, a Committee has been constituted in NITI Aayog to recommend a road map for harnessing the development potential of Little Andaman and Great Nicobar Islands in Andaman & Nicobar Islands.
This information was given by Shri K. J. Alphons, Union Minister of State (I/C) for Tourism in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.