KARGIL: Srinagar based policy group, Ehsaas, and Department of Tourism, Government of Jammu and Kashmir, have adopted a picturesque tribal village Huderman in Kargil district, bordering India and Pakistan, for tourism promotion, an official press note issued Tuesday read.
In this regard, Ehsaas in association with Kargil Development Project and Department of Tourism, J&K organised a day-long workshop with women participants, indentifying some of them as the ambassadors for the promotion of the village.
According to the press note, Secretary Ehsaas, Ezabir Ali, said that tourism is one of the principle factors of economic development across the state and, government and other organisations must work for positioning it as a leading global destination by the year 2025 and contribute to economic and social well-being of the people of Jammu & Kashmir.
She said that this would also provide employment opportunities, inclusive development and promotional policies with an aim to achieve internationally competitive tourism sector focused on sustainable growth to the regions across the state. She said, “Government and non-profit organisations must come forward to contribute their bit and make some changes on the ground.”
Assistant Director, Jammu and Kashmir Department of Tourism, Aga Tuha, said most of the tribal areas are hilly, inaccessible resulting in the bypassing of general developmental programmes. Due to this, infrastructure and development facilities in tribal areas for education, roads, healthcare, communication, drinking water, sanitation, etc. lagged behind compared to other areas which has resulted in further widening the gaps of development between the tribals and the general population for a long time. He also gave a detailed presentation of the facilities and programmes available for the tribal areas of the State.
He said, “In order to develop Jammu & Kashmir as a dynamic, sustainable and most-favoured tourist destination – offering high quality experience to tourists by providing congenial development framework for facilitating and accelerating investments and improving livelihood opportunities, government must focus on the far off areas and tribal tourism.”
“More and more scientific strategies must be devised for increasing arrival of domestic and international tourists in these areas, besides giving trainings to the local populace,” he added.
Interacting with the participants, Executive Director, Kargil Development Project, Feroze Ahmad Kachu, said that government must promote effective inter-departmental coordination to streamline processes and increase sector performance in areas like horticulture, agriculture and sericulture in the region.
He said that promoting sustainable tourism and encouraging conservation and preservation of unique natural and cultural heritage of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh would bring the state to new heights.
“Government must also develop potential new and emerging markets through targeted marketing strategies based on tourist profile,” he said. “We all must help government to harness the opportunities available in the sectors like adventure, caravan tourism, heliport tourism, handicrafts, pilgrimage, MICE, heritage, eco-tourism and golf, etc.,” he added.
Another member from, KDP, Bakir Sheikh said that tourism growth potential could be harnessed as a strategy for rural development. He said, “Development of human resources for tourism sector and capacity building of the tourism stakeholders must be a priority for the government of Jammu and Kashmir.”
Earlier, during the day-long programme, resource persons imparted training to the women participants for becoming tourist guides and tourism promotion ‘torch bearers’ in their areas. Later, the team visited the Hunderman village, 19 kms from the Kargil township where the team pledged to work for the promotion of the Huderman village as tourist destination after hoisting adoption flag here, the press note added.