Govt to hold Tourism festival in Srinagar next month

The State Government is planning to hold a Tourism festival in the summer capital here next month, in a bid to give flip to the ongoing tourist season in Kashmir.

An official statement said Advisor to Governor Khurshid Ahmed Ganai has issued directions to Secretary Tourism Department to prepare for a Tourism festival in Srinagar in third or fourth week of June.

Ganai holds the charge of Tourism Department. “The national and international stakeholders will be invited to the festival to re-focus attention on J&K as a favored tourist destination for which it is known the world over,” the statement said.

Meanwhile the Advisor asked the Tourism Department officials to gear up for ongoing tourist season and forthcoming Amarnath Yatra, stating a large number of tourists and pilgrims were expected to visit the State.

Ganai said 2019 was likely to witness steady flow of tourists to the State as well as pilgrims for Amarnath and Mata Vaishno Devi Ji Yatra.

Highlighting potential of the State in adventure tourism, the Advisor issued instructions to Directors of Tourism to create special facilities and arrangements for those who want to go for trekking, paragliding, water sports and mountaineering expeditions. 

He laid emphasis on promoting J&K as a high-end golf destination in the country.

Inviting suggestions from all tourism stakeholders for increasing the tourist footfall in the State, the Advisor said a fresh roadmap has to be prepared to reinvigorate the State’s travel industry which will happen by integrating leisure, adventure, heritage and pilgrim tourism.

He highlighted the multiplier effect of the tourism sector and directed the Department to effectively counter the negative perception being spread about travelling to the State. 

Urging private stakeholders to play an active role in building their capacities and creating niche facilities for tourists visiting the State, Ganai described tourism as a pivot around which the State’s economy can be rebuilt in a big way.

“Tourism has a great potential in terms of employment generation and provides vital linkage to the famed handicrafts sector of the State,” he said.

Describing tourism as a vital industry, the Advisor reiterated his earlier direction to establish a ‘single window clearance mechanism’ to facilitate private players to boost investment in the State’s tourism sector.

He issued directions for taking steps to bring in more scenic spots on the tourism map of the State.      

The Advisor expressed hope that a large number of tourists would visit the State as the Department and stakeholders have made adequate preparations for convenience of the tourists.