Tourism Deptt. condoles Ashraf Batkoo's demise

The Department of Tourism has condoled the demise of former Director General, Tourism, Muhammad Ashraf Batkoo who passed away last night here.

The deceased had served the Department in various capacities and rose to the position of Director-General.

Soon after hearing of Mr. Batkoo’s demise, a condolence meeting was convened at the Directorate of Tourism here this morning in which the speakers recalled the contribution rendered by late Mr. Batkoo in the development of Tourism in Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh.
The condolence meeting was chaired by Secretary, Tourism, Culture, Youth Services & Sports, Sarmad Hafeez.

Addressing the meeting, Mr. Sarmad Hafeez said late Mr. Batkoo was an encyclopaedia of Kashmir tourism whose contribution in its growth and development is unparalleled. He said he had the passion of promoting Kashmir tourism  to such an extent that he did it even after his retirement through his newspaper columns and books.

“He popularised Adventure tourism in Jammu & Kashmir in a big way and his contribution in getting Ladakh on the tourist map would always immortalise Batkoo sahib”, the Tourism Secretary said in his address in the condolence meeting.
Mr. Hafeez prayed for peace to the departed soul of Mr. Batkoo and conveyed his sympathies with the bereaved family.

Director, Tourism, Kashmir, Nisar Ahmad Wani in his address said with his vast experience in tourism, trekking and adventure sports, Mr. Batkoo made a phenomenal contribution to J&K’s tourism which would be remembered by one and all. He also prayed for peace to the departed soul.
The condolence meeting was attended by all the senior officers and staff of the Tourism Department.

Similar condolence meetings were held at the offices of Tourism Department at New Delhi and Jammu.

Considered as the founder of adventure tourism in Kashmir, Mr. Batkoo played a key role in developing Ladakh as a tourist destination, and bringing it on the tourist map of the world. He would write frequently on the history of the land, tourism and other social issues.  He also authored a couple of books on Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh

A condolence meeting was held today in the Directorate of Tourism, Jammu, under the chairmanship of Director Tourism, R.K. Katoch in which the officers/officials condoled the sudden and untimely demise of Mohammad Ashraf, who served the Tourism Department as Director General Tourism from 2000 to 2003.

The Department placed on record his great contribution to the J&K Tourism Department. The Officers/Officials paid rich tributes to the departed soul and prayed to God to give strength and courage to the family to bear this irreparable loss.