STATE TIMES NEWS
SRINAGAR: Secretary, Tourism, Culture, Youth Services & Sports, Sarmad Hafeez on Monday convened an interactive meeting with the representatives of travel and hospitality sector here to chalk out the strategy for upcoming publicity campaigns and roadshows to be held across the country. While expressing satisfaction over the tourists’ flow to the Valley, the Secretary Tourism said the sustained efforts of the Department and stakeholders have borne fruit and, as a result, prime destinations like Gulmarg and Srinagar are abuzz with tourists.
He hoped this trend of tourist arrivals would continue and hopefully the tourism sector in J&K will revive to its normal levels sooner than later.
Elaborating on the upcoming programmes to attract both budget and high-end tourists, Sarmad Hafeez said the department is planning a series of roadshows across the country besides organizing several festivals here in the spring and summer seasons.
He said the blossoming of the colorful flowers in Tulip and Mughal Gardens attracts huge numbers of travelers in the spring season and called upon all concerned Departments to coordinate in the better management of the coming festivals. The Secretary Tourism informed that the Department will be organize Badamwari Festival, Tulip Festival, and Houseboat Festival in the coming days and months to add to the attractions of visiting tourists. He hoped these festivals will be mega events to attract both locals and tourists besides promoting the Valley’s flora, culture, seasons and cuisine to the tourists.
Sarmad Hafeez sought suggestions and active participation of the travel trade bodies for the successful conduct of these festivals and roadshows and making the tourist activities memorable for the visitor and stakeholders together. On the occasion, the representatives of travel trade bodies expressed happiness over the current flow of tourists to the Valley and appreciated the role of the department in reviving and promoting the tourism after the Covid-19 pandemic.
They informed the meeting that the hotels at prime locations are fully packed and the trend is expected to continue during the spring and summer seasons also.
Earlier, Director Tourism, Kashmir Dr G N Itoo informed the meeting about the various initiatives being undertaken by the Directorate of Tourism, Kashmir for the upcoming spring and summer season including extensive promotion and publicity campaigns across several platforms.
In a separate meeting with the heads of various departments, the Secretary, Tourism reviewed the conduct of upcoming festival in the Valley.
The meeting was attended by Director Tourism Kashmir, Dr. G N Ittoo, MD JKTDC, Nisar Ahmad Wani, MD SKICC, Javid Bakshi, Director Floriculture, Farooq Ahmad Rather, Director Handlooms and Handicraft, Mehmood A Shah, CEOs of Pahalgam and Gulmarg Development Authorities, Joint Director Information, Joint Director, Tourism besides Deputy Directors and the senior officers of the Tourism department.
During the meeting, Secretary Tourism discussed the timing and various events to be held during the festivals. He sought coordination from all the departments in making these festivals a huge success.