New Delhi, May 26: The tourism ministry on Tuesday said it was extending the validity period of approvals and classification of hotels and other accommodation units till June 30. The ministry classifies hotels under the star rating system to conform to the expected standards for different classes of tourists. The certification is valid for a period of five years.

"Considering the current situation when the hospitality industry is going through a very difficult time in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown that has severely impacted the accommodation sector, it has been decided that validity of approval or certifications of hotels and other accommodation units whose project approvals and classification have expired are deemed to be extended till June 30,” the ministry said in a statement.

Due to the postponement of inspection work and application scrutiny during the lockdown period, it has decided to allow six months' relaxation or extension to all categories of tour operators for their approval with the ministry.

However, the relaxations are subject to certain conditions that include that the previous approval expires during the lockdown period.