Winter tourism to be a grand success; Gulmarg, Pahalgam ‘sold out’ on Christmas, New Year Eve: Tourism Secy


Says Promoting Bhadwrah, Sansar in Jammu, Sonmarg, Dodhpatri in Kashmir for winter tourism events in a big way;  Tourists going for trekking in Wardwan, Kishtwar, Peer Panjal mountains first time; Enforcement wings made robust to ensure no cheating with tourists enjoying horse rides, credit for tourism boom goes to all stakeholders

Srinagar, Dec 21  : Jammu and Kashmir government Thursday said that it was sure about the grand success of winter tourism in the Union Territory (UT) as Gulmarg and Pahalgam have been already “sold out” on the Christmas and New Year Eve.

Talking to reporters during his visit to SPS Museum in Srinagar, J&K’s Tourism Secretary Syed Abid Rasheed Shah said that the administration is very sure about the grand success of winter tourism. “I am glad to see tourism flourishing on all fronts. I believe winters will be very successful on the tourism front, the way numbers are rising and trends are fast changing positively,” he said as per news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO). “The numbers of foreign as well as domestic tourists are increasing rapidly.”

He said that the world famous ski resort of Gulmarg and Pahalgam have already been “sold out” one Christmas and New Year’s Eve.

“Today we are at the SPS Museum and see how the tourists from Singapore are enjoying their visit,” the Tourism Secretary said. “Stakeholders have played a great role in reviving tourism in J&K. Credit for successful tourism goes to all those who are associated with the industry.”

Shah said that in the coming months, there may arise a need to build new infrastructure as the government has opened many new destinations. “Now tourists have a choice to go beyond Gulmarg, Pahalgam and Sonmarg,” he said. “We have promoted many offbeat destinations. Nowadays, we see foreign tourists enjoying trekking at Wardwan, Kisthwar and Per Panjal mountains.”

The Tourism Secretary said that J&K has been appreciated by the Ministry of Tourism for promoting off beat and adventure tourism. “At Gujrat, we recently received the award for adventure tourism promotion in J&K,” he said.

He said apart from Pahalgam and Gulmarg, the Tourism department is all set to promote Bhadwrah, Sansar in Jammu and Sonmarg and Dodhpathri in Kashmir in a big way.

“I am glad to see the livelihood improvement as J&K touches new heights in tourism promotions,” he said. On the government’s response to fix the issue of overcharging by pony wallas, he said J&K tops the list to have the best enforcement wing. “Around 20 FIRs were lodged by the wing but we should work collectively as a society to ensure the smooth stay of tourists in Kashmir,” he said. “Some 2.2 million people of J&K are directly and indirectly dependent on tourism. Tourism is the backbone of J&K’s economy.”—(KNO) 

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