Tourism best way to promote dialogue: Mehbooba

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Interacts with tour operators from outside JK; says infra being upgraded to world class

Newspoint Bureau

Srinagar, December 25

Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti today described tourism as the best way to promote dialogue even as she said State Government is making efforts to create world class tourist infrastructure in Jammu & Kashmir.

Interacting with a delegation of tour operators from different cities of the country, the Chief Minister said tourism promotes people to people contact and tourists become goodwill ambassadors of a place. She said like the maxim – ‘seeing is believing’, a tourist can testify the veracity of the claim about a place after only visiting it. She asked the tour operators to promote visiting Jammu & Kashmir not as a business venture alone but as a means to connect with the people of the State as well.

Mehbooba Mufti said her Government has plans to create world class tourism infrastructure in the State. She said road connectivity to tourist destinations, bed capacity at tourist spots, wayside facilities etc. are being improved and upgraded to address the requirements of every segment of tourists. She said theme based parks and places are being added to provide variety of attraction to tourists. Similarly, she added, heritage lovers and trekkers would also be having more spots and treks to visit by adding new heritage sites and routes to their check list.

The Chief Minister said every region and season in Jammu & Kashmir has a unique attraction for tourists and the same should be promoted among tourists. She said Jammu & Kashmir is as safe for tourists, particularly women, as any other place in the country and despite the unrest during the past five months visiting tourists were duly taken care of by the people here.

Present on the occasion were Secretary, Tourism, Farooq Ahmad Shah; heads of several units of tourism besides representatives of 22 tour operators from Mumbai, Bangalore, Kolkatta, Delhi, Ahmedabad and other cities including Raja Rani Travels, Thomas  Cook, Cox & King, Navbharat Travels, Kesari Travels, Henna Tours, Pooja Holidays and representatives of other prominent tour operators of the country.

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Mehbooba reviews dev scenario at Anantnag, asks officers to be responsive to winter needs

Directs review of cases against youth not seriously involved

Newspoint Bureau

Srinagar, December 25

Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti reviewed the pace of developmental works at an officers’ meeting here today.

The Chief Minister impressed upon the officers to be responsive to the winter specific needs of people in the Kashmir Valley particularly in sectors like power and water supply, firewood and fuel availability, ration supply etc. She asked the engineers of PDD to rationalize their resources to address the complaint of frequent power cuts during winters which puts people to immense difficulties. She asked the officers of other Departments to be available to the complaints and grievances of people during winters and take urgent steps on them.

Mehbooba Mufti also reviewed the stocking and supply position of essential commodities like fuel, ration etc in the District and directed regular augmentation of the same.

The Chief Minister directed review of the cases against youth who were not seriously involved during the unrest of past five months. She said that though not many youth are now in custody, a lenient view may be taken of youth who were either not involved in any serious offence or were too young.

Mehbooba Mufti also directed the officers to keep the tempo of developmental works on and redouble their efforts to make up for the lost time. She said that though a good time of working season got lost this year, efforts should be made to make up for the time lost by taking up and completing the works within or ahead of time schedule.

The meeting was told that work on several key developmental projects in the district is apace, including a 300 bedded district hospital, Trauma Hospital at Bijbehara, degree colleges at Kokernag and Uttersoo, Pushwara bridge, polytechnic college at Larkipora besides eight major bridges which are in various stages of completion. It was given out that many of these developmental projects would be fast paced and are likely to be completed next year.

Minister for R&B & Parliamentary Affairs, Abdul Rehman Veeri; Minister for Education, Naeem Akhtar; Minister of State for Hajj & Auqaf, Syed Farooq Andrani; MP, Nazir Ahmad Laway; legislators, Gulzar Ahmad Wani, Altaf Ahmad Kaloo and Abdul Rahim Rather; Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Baseer Ahmad Khan; IGP Kashmir zone, SJM Gillani; DIG, SKR, Nitish Kumar; Deputy Commissioner, Anantnag, Syed Abid Rasheed; SSP, Anantnag, Zubair Khan and divisional heads of several Departments were present in the meeting.

Earlier, the Chief Minister inaugurated the newly constructed meeting Hall in the Dak Bungalow complex. Built at a cost of Rs. 4.88 crore, the meeting hall is first of its kind in the South Kashmir.

The Chief Minister also laid the foundation of Khanabal-Batapora road to be constructed by the Department of Disaster Management.

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