Member Parliament and PDP President, Mehbooba Mufti today called on Union Tourism Minister, Mahesh Sharma and sought his intervention in starting international flights from Srinagar Airport.
She also sought the Union Minister’s intervention in the installation of guiding lights at the runway to facilitate flight operations at the Srinagar airport during poor visibility conditions.
Mehbooba, according to an official handout, said to begin with international flights should be operated on Srinagar-Amritsar-Dubai, Srinagar-Chandigarh-Dubai and Srinagar-Delhi-Jeddah sectors. She said there is also a pressing need for starting daily flights on Srinagar-Leh-New Delhi sector and morning and evening flights on Srinagar-Jammu sector.
Mehbooba said while Srinagar-Dubai flight would facilitate hassle-free travel of the businessmen and tourists to the UAE, the Srinagar-Jeddah flight would be of great use for the Hajj and Umrah pilgrims.
She said similarly, Srinagar-Leh-Delhi flight would boost tourism in the region while morning and evening flights on Srinagar-Jammu sector would be of great convenience to the people of the State, especially the employees and businessmen who keep on shuttling between the twin capital cities.
Mehbooba also called for putting a slab on airfares on Srinagar-Jammu, Srinagar-Delhi and Srinagar-Leh sectors as the sky-rocketing airfares, especially during the summers adversely affect the tourist arrivals to the State.
She said while according to Airports Authority of India (AAI), the Instrumentation Landing System (ILS) is already in place at the Srinagar Airport, the flights are not able to operate there due to non-availability of Guiding Lights on the runway. She said to ensure hassle-free flight operations during foggy season, the Guiding Lights should be installed on the runway at the earliest.
Mehbooba also sought the Union Minister’s intervention for return of J&K’s rare manuscripts, including Gilgit manuscript, and artefacts, including those from Burzhama, Semthan and Guphkraal lying in various museums outside the State.
She also sought the Union Tourism Minister’s intervention in making the Centaur Hotels at Srinagar and Gulmarg fully functional in partnership with J&K Government. She also sought his intervention in expediting various ropeway projects in the State including Patnitop and Mantalai ropeway projects.
Mehbooba expressed gratitude to the Union Government for earmarking Rs 2200 crore for the tourism sector in the Prime Minister’s Reconstruction Plan.
The Union Tourism Minister assured Mehbooba that the issues raised by her would be looked into on priority, the handout added.