Mumbai: A five-day trade fair cum expo of the Union Territories of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh is likely to pave the way for establishing a socio-economic corridor with Maharashtra, and also to promote them afresh as a Bollywood shooting destination, organisers said here on Tuesday.
The event, which concludes on Wednesday, saw around 150 leading businessmen from the three UTs showcasing their diverse range of products and services to attract the business communities in Maharashtra and later investments in their sectors.
The included stalls of saffron, all major dry fruits of the region and much coveted handloom products like carpets, rugs, pashmina and kani shawls, pheran, and namda at the Athwas 2023.
Athwas President Gagan Mahotra said that Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh have immense potential as an investment destination in India and the Athwas-2023 is expected to unleash enormous opportunities for growth and development there.
The five-day event attracted a host of celebrities and people from different walks of life including Tourism Minister Mangal Prabhat Lodha, MLC Shrikant T.P. Bharatiya, Marathi superstar Swapnil Joshi, Gauranga Das of Govardhan Ecovillage, Balaji Infra Projects Ltd Chairman and Managing Director Vijay Kalantri, who is also Chairman of World Trade Center Mumbai.
The other prominent persons included venture capitalist Mahmood Ansari of Saara Group, J&K Federation of Social Organisations & Trusts President Riyaz Malik, Dalit Indian Chamber of Commerce & Industry President Milind Kamble, Sahakarbharati’s Sanjay Pachpor and Shrikant Patwardhan, Madhuri Sahasrabude, Ruchita Rane, Irfan Ali Pirjade of Gulshan Foundation and more.
Besides opening it as the gateway to business with J&K and Ladakh, the organisers also promoted it as a film destination for Bollywood, which in the past used to shoot many movies on location there, said Mahotra. The five days saw several interactive business meetings, discussions focussed on key growth sectors, the existing markets and investment opportunities in the three UTs, plus tourism potential and close interaction with the people of Maharashtra, said Rane.
Athwas is a non-profit socio-cultural organisation of British Kashmiris which aims to bring the diaspora together to promote Kashmiri culture and heritage and is involved in multiple activities across sectors.