Historical Tourism in Kerala: Archaeologist KK Muhammed talks to ARPO
Dr. KK Muhammed, a renowned Indian archaeologist known for his significant discoveries, recently spoke with ARPO about the stagnant state of historical tourism in Kerala. Born in Koduvally, Calicut, Dr. KK Muhammed obtained his master's degree from Aligarh University and served as the Regional Director [North] of the Archaeological Survey of India. He is credited with the discovery of Ibadat Khana, the venue for religious debates established by Mughal emperor Akbar in 1575, and has also been involved in the excavations of Ram Mandir under BB Lal.
During the interview, Dr. KK Muhammed expressed concern about Kerala's passive approach to archaeology and its failure to effectively utilise the state's rich historical heritage for tourism promotion. He emphasised that the government is not fully aware of the potential opportunities that can be unlocked by appropriately leveraging Kerala's past. Currently, heritage sites are under-utilised, and the neglect of Kerala's archaeology has limited tourism in the state to its scenic beauty alone.
Dr. KK Muhammed stressed the importance of using history in a manner similar to how Goa leverages its ancestry for historical marketing. He emphasized that tourism is a non-polluting industry and suggested the creation of facilities that provide an educational experience. He highlighted that beach and hill tours alone do not offer sufficient intellectual stimulation for tourists.
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