From security bandobast to ramping up works, Kashmir prepping up to host G20
Srinagar: From beefing up security to ensuring that Smart City projects are completed on time, the Jammu and Kashmir government is working round-the-clock to ensure that the G20 tourism group meeting in Srinagar is a huge success and promotes Kashmir as a global tourism destination.
According to sources, top security officials from Jammu and Kashmir held a detailed meeting with the central team to plan security and other arrangements for G20 delegates in Kashmir, where the conference is slated to take place.
“In Srinagar and other tourist destinations that G20 delegates will visit, special forces and anti-drone technology will be stationed. Additional paramilitary forces will also be relocated and deployed in Srinagar, Gulmarg, and other vulnerable areas,” official sources said.
The G20 Tourism Working Group meeting is scheduled to take place in Srinagar from May 24 to 26.
Prior to the event, a top Police officer said that the security forces were also keeping an eye on social media to gather technical information to thwart any untoward incident.
He said that additionally, more than 500 Police personnel had been sent to Udhampur district for soft skills training so that they manage the delegates well.
Apart from the security bandobast, new walkways are being created and roadways are being reconfigured throughout Srinagar city in preparation for the event.
Streets and flyovers have been painted in the G20 theme colours. The projects that have been prioritised for the important event are currently nearing completion, officials said.
J&K would play host to an international event with the participation of delegates of G20 member states, guest nations, and various international organisations for the first time since the abrogation of Articles 370 and Article 35-A.
Prior to the significant international event, Srinagar’s south and eastern areas are receiving a new makeover, and majority of the work is now nearing completion.
Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, Vijay Bidhuri has directed Chief Engineers of R&B and Srinagar Smart City Limited (SSCL) to blacktop all the roads included in the city’s beautification plan.
Meeting preparations are also in progress in other districts of Kashmir.
A sightseeing excursion of Baramulla, Dachigam National Park, and Gulmarg ski resort would also be provided for foreign participants.
The G20 tourism summit would take place at a time when Kashmir is experiencing a boom in tourism and J&K draws significant investments in the pharmaceuticals, cold storage, food processing, packaging, logistics, medical cities, educational institutions, and other sectors.
There are also plans for foreign investments totaling about Rs 3000 crore, including one from the Lulu Group International, an Indian Emirati-based multinational conglomerate company that operates a chain of hypermarkets and retail companies, headquartered in Abu Dhabi, UAE.