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Tourism dev projects of Jammu division reviewed

‘Rs 198 cr dev plan for Mansar under Swadesh Darshan Scheme on anvil’

Post by on Monday, February 22, 2021

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Jammu, Feb 22: Advisor to Lieutenant Governor, Baseer Ahmad Khan, today convened a meeting to review ongoing projects of the Tourism department.

The Advisor said that the LG has called for “major upgrade of existing infrastructure of Jammu Kashmir Tourism Development Corporation and the same needs to be done at the earliest to cater to the increasing number of tourist influx.”

The Advisor conducted an assessment of the development plan worth Rs 198 crore for Mansar, which has been submitted to Government of India, to be funded under the Swadesh Darshan Scheme. Besides, some of the works already been sanctioned under the Capex budget which included development of viewpoints along Sidhra-Mansar and Samba-Mansar routes, construction of gender-based toilets, procuring boats, life jackets and installation of high power illumination etc. were also reviewed. A list of all JKTDC properties was also submitted to him.

Advisor Baseer Khan said that Basohli region has a “huge potential of becoming the finest tourist centre in future and therefore needs special attention.” He asked the officers to explore the possibility of adventure sports, hiking, camping and mountain biking in the Mansar area. “The LG government is focused on development of various religious and tourist attractions of Jammu region like Shiv Khori, Uttar Behni and Purmandal for their inclusion in the larger tourism circuit of the region,” he said.

The Advisor suggested that regular exhibitions showcasing local handicrafts, handloom, cuisine and culture be organised at tourist sites to attract tourist footfall.

Administrative Secretary, Tourism and Culture, Sarmad Hafeez, informed the Advisor that the Jammu Ropeway Project at Bagh-e-Bahu is operating successfully and that its second phase is to be made functional after some technical analysis. “Besides, weekly cultural activities are being organised at the site to attract tourists,” he added. He further informed that the department is planning new cable car projects at Pahalgam, Shiv Khori and Gulmarg.

Sarmad Hafeez informed that the recently held Patnitop Festival had been a grand success and that two additional tourism festivals are being planned in Jammu division, as per the directions of LG. Issues pertaining to traffic movement from Jammu to Patnitop were also raised during the meeting.

Sarmad Hafeez also informed the Advisor that a “Kashmiri Pandit Food Festival” is being planned by the tourism department to be organized around the Mahashivratri Festival, and that this would provide people a chance to relish traditional cuisines of Kashmir. He also shared details regarding the upcoming Jammu Mahotsav.

The Advisor directed the Administrative Secretary to plan tourism festivals at Mansar, Bhaderwah and other sites in Jammu region. He directed that the Gulmarg, Pahalgam and Patnitop Clubs be made functional at the earliest and regular activities be organised therein for tourists. He also asked the officers to maintain adherence to COVID precautions at all tourist centres.

Those present at the meeting included Managing Director, J&K Cable Car Corporation, Majid Khalil Ahmad Drabu; Managing Director, J&K TDC, Nisar Ahmad; Director Tourism Jammu, Dr NJ Chowdhary; Director Planning, Tourism Department, Parvez Ahmed Kakru and CEO Surinsar-Mansar Development Authority, Dr. Gurvinderjeet Singh.

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