Government keen to bring professionalism in tourism
Jammu, Oct 28: Seeking to bring professionalism in tourism, the tourism department is looking forward to send nearly 400 youth outside J&K for training to overcome the problem of absence of trained manpower in tourism.
Highly placed sources said that batches of youth will be sent to different parts of India to get required training in planning of expeditions, rescue techniques in the event of any accident, etc.
The proposed training courses were actually planned for early this year “but these could not takeoff due to turmoil in the Valley,” sources said, adding that it was more likely that the selection of batches and their training would start in next few weeks.
Officials said the government had asked all the 12-tourism development authorities across the state to identify youth so that they could be imparted special expertise in the field of their interest in different parts of the country, where adventure sports are a major tourist attraction.
The youth, sources said, would be trained in sports like water rafting, rock climbing, mountaineering and trekking as these have been identified by the state government as priority tourism promotion ventures to attract high end tourists, particularly foreigners.
Sources said although the government has introduced various adventure sports in the state, lack of manpower is creating hindrance in full exploitation of the huge potential and utilization of whatsoever infrastructure at its disposal.
“Well trained manpower is a necessity at the moment and selected youth will be given proper training in different fields,” said a senior official from the department.
He said expansion of the tourism sector had become a priority for creating jobs in the state.
The tourism development centres were established by the previous state government to create physical infrastructure to boost local employment and economy.
These authorities include Patnitop, Bhaderwah, Kishtwar, Poonch, Rajouri, Lakhanpur, Sarthal, Pahalgam, Gulmarg, Kokernag, Sonamarg, Leh and Kargil.
“Under the plan short term visits will be organised to enable the youth to get exposure and learn about how other states are promoting tourism,” the official said.
The state is keen to boost revenue and generate employment by exploiting the available tourism potential to the full sector. “In 2006, the state recorded 76,15,217 domestic tourists visits, which increased to 79,15,21 in 2007. However, in 2008, the number of domestic tourists visiting the state come down to 76, 38, 977 due to the Amarnath land row which later increased to about 80,00,000 in 2009,” sources said.
As far as foreign tourists arrivals are concerned, in 2006 the number of such tourists was 46,087 which increased to 52,754 in 2007 and touched the highest ever mark in last twenty years of 54,565 in 2009.
During the 10th plan period, the Union Ministry of Tourism sanctioned projects worth Rs 128.23 crore for Jammu and Kashmir. These included infrastructure development projects as well as holding grants for fairs and festivals.
In the 11th plan, so far the ministry has sanctioned Rs 130 crore for tourism infrastructure, sources said.
Lastupdate on : Thu, 28 Oct 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 28 Oct 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 29 Oct 2010 00:00:00 IST
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