Sri Patna Sahib became the most visited religious site in Bihar in the year of 2017 largely due to the celebration of the birth anniversary of Sri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib Ji. At the Sikh Conclave, the representatives made it clear to the Bihar Govt that if they can drastically increase Sikh tourism if they only focused on basic needs of the Sikh devotees such as security needs. Former MP Tarlochan Singh made a statement at the conclave that if lakhs of Sikhs travel to the great Himalayas mountains than getting to Patna Sahib should be a breeze.
According to reporting agencies, Bihar witnessed a mammoth rise in tourist footfall in January this year as well due to two mega events — the Prakashotsava and the 32nd Kalachakra initiations. More than 5 lakh Sikh devotees from India and abroad came to Patna for the Prakashotsava celebrations and around 4 lakh Buddhist devotees visited Bodh Gaya for Kalachakra. However, the tourist inflow in both the mega events will be counted in this year’s figures.
A leading tourism and booking site Trip Advisor ranked Sri Patna Sahib as the most visited and highest ranked site in all of Bihar. The influx of Sikh devotees wishing to visit the birth of place of Sri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib Ji from throughout the world after Bihar Govt large scale celebration of the 350th Parkash Utsav has contributed to the drastic rise. The mega event drew over a million people from around India and the world to attend the event and created much needed awareness of the religious and historic site.
The Bihar Govt realized quickly that in order to increase tourism in the state, they needed to create better transportation and infrastructure needs of the devotees. The govt spent crores of rupees renovating around the historic city and provided much needed accommodations for the visitors.
The Bihar Govt has released plans to build museums related to Sikh history and create convenient ways for devotees to arrive in the city.