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Tourism Secy asks CEOs to get ready for upcoming season

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Srinagar: Secretary, Tourism & Culture, Sarmad Hafeez reviewed the tourism scenario of Kashmir in a meeting of all the Chief Executive Officers of Tourism Development Authorities and officers of the Tourism Department here today.

Chairing the meeting, the Tourism Secretary impressed upon the officers to get ready for the upcoming tourist seasons and in this regard take all logistic measures required at their respective destinations. He stressed on setting up an inter departmental task force at each destination for better management and coordination among various concerned departments. He directed the CEOs to ensure that road connectivity to and within their resorts is maintained at good conditions.

Complimenting the officers for conducting winter months so successfully, the Tourism Secretary said the Department’s decision to open destinations like Sonamarg and Doodpathri during winters has yielded encouraging results. He exuded optimism that coming months would bring tourists in good numbers and asked the officers and CEOs to brace up for that in terms of facilities and logistics. He specifically directed them to ensure cleanliness and put an end to the use of plastics and polythene at these resorts. Besides, he suggested devising an activity chart at these destinations for the benefit of tourists.

Laying stress on capacity building, Sarmad Hafeez advised the CEOs to devise and suggest the skill enhancement modules for the segments of stakeholders in their areas for better service delivery. He also laid stress on capacity building of Tourist Police to ensure better service and convenience to tourists. He sought status of Master Plans of these destinations while laying stress on monitoring and regulating the tourist related activities at these destinations.

Sarmad Hafeez said that it is the endeavour of the Government to promote the tourism potential of the UT on a bigger scale in collaboration with the stakeholders. He asked the officers to be self drivers in this regard to achieve this objective.

The Tourism Secretary directed making efforts to further promote the 75 offbeat destinations identified by the Department across J&K. He also advised them to come up with ideas so that more and more tourists visit these lesser known destinations in the days and months to come. He specifically directed devising a calendar of activities and exploring possibilities of starting some adventure activities like hot air ballooning, paragliding and parasailing at various tourist spots across Kashmir.

Earlier, Director, Tourism, Kashmir, Dr. G N Itoo gave a resume of the activities being undertaken by the Department to tap the tourism potential and promote it across the country.

Managing Director, J&K Cable Car Corporation, Muhammad Akbar Wani, CEOs of all Tourism Development Authorities of Kashmir and officers of Tourism Department were present in the meeting.

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