The Jammu & Kashmir Tourism Department was recently felicitated at the National Tourism Awards 2012-13 in the category Best State – complete Development of Tourism. On its way for renew and take tourism back to its glorious days in Jammu & Kashmir, the state government has concentrate on creating well spread out infrastructure. As per Ghulam Ahmad Mir, Tourism Minister, Jammu & Kashmir there will be enough infrastructure in place to support all tourist sectors round the year.
“We are happy to share that J&K is registering a record number of domestic and international leisure tourists. The misconception that many people had on the non conducive environment prevalent in J&K to support tourism has dwindled away. Today, J&K offers a better environment than Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, or any other leading tourist destination in India,” statement Ghulam Ahmad Mir.
The Terrorism change that has been brought about and creates a welcoming environment in Jammu & Kashmir is result of a new people’s movement, said Mir. The policymakers, political parties and citizens, he added, very well recognize the importance of tourism in the state and are eager to contribute to make the state a tourist’s paradise.
According to Mir, the infrastructure being created on the ground across the various travel attractions speaks volumes about the commitment of the state to develop tourism. “For the second year running, the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India has valued and appreciated our work done by Jammu & Kashmir Tourism Department by conferring it with the National Tourism Award for the year 2012-13 as the best state for comprehensive development of tourism. We are also thankful to the centre for providing us the support for undertaking strategic tourism projects. One of the major reasons for having won the NTA 2013-14 has been our ability to complete CFA Schemes within the stipulated time, and also put in place mechanisms to monitor the progress of these projects,” he added.
The list of new ideas in the state of J&K is long, explained Mir. The Tourism department has introduced important projects such as the Nagar Mega Heritage Tourist Circuit, Tourist City Centre at Srinagar and also introduced niche activities such as Paragliding and Yachting to add new dimensions to the adventure segment. The Jammu & Kashmir Cable Car Corporation also commissioned a new lift at Makhdoom Sahib Shrine, Srinagar besides installing Ski Chairlift at Kongdori – Gulmarg for encouraging skiing in International Market.
The state of J&K has also successfully conducted development activities in potential markets such as South East Asia, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan, Russia and Central Asian Countries of Tajikistan, Kazakhstan and others, Mir pointed out.
On the very excessive increase in air prices in the peak season, Mir said the situation is being monitored. “We are clearly dedicated to make J&K a round-the-year destination so that air prices are reasonable during the year. We will not hesitate to even introduce a maximum cap on the peak season air tariff, if the need be,” Mir concluded.