SRINAGAR: In order to tap the traditional market of Gujarat for tourism, Director Tourism Kashmir Mahmood A Shah visited Ahmadabad and interacted with leading media organisations and also with the tour and travel agents of the state.
Director tourism interacted with editorial boards of leading local media houses including Divya Bhaskar, My FM and Gujarat Samachar and informed them about the effects of negative reporting on the Kashmir tourism, an official handout read.
According to the handout, the director urged them to highlight the positive side of Kashmir which includes its centuries old culture, tradition, art and craft, rich hospitality besides bewitching landscape.
Gujarat is the principal market for Kashmir from where around 60 per cent of the total travellers visit J&K, the handout read.
Pursuant to his meeting with the newspaper heads, many leading newspapers have started carrying beautiful winter pictures of the Kashmir especially, of Gulmarg which is receiving good rush of tourists after recent snowfall.
Director tourism also had a live chat with the listeners of My FM radio station informing them about the department’s recently launched Valley Weekend programmes, upcoming winter festivals and host of the adventure sports activities to be organised on Christmas and new year at Gulmarg, Pahalgam and Patnitop.
He invited them to celebrate holidays in Kashmir this winter where hoteliers are also organising evening entertainment activities, it further read.
During his tour, the director was also invited as a chief guest over a special function Tag Family Get Together organised by Tour Operators and Travel Agents Association (TAG) of Gujarat in which around 400 tour operators and participants from hospitality sector from Gujarat attended.
Director tourism assured travel fraternity of all the facilities and cooperation from the department for organising memorable tours for their clients in J&K.
“Gujarat is not only a traditional but a principal market for Kashmir. We have seen dip in the tourist influx from Gujarat this year due to continued negative media reportage which compelled us to reach out to the media houses in the state and also gear up for aggressive marketing there,” said director tourism Kashmir.
TAG also organised press conference on Kashmir tourism in which director tourism Kashmir answered many queries of the media on safety concerns.
President TAG Jitu Shah assured director tourism that the travel agents would sell Kashmir which has huge demand from travellers.
The department is also planning to organise a travel show in Ahmadabad in the first week of February to further reinforce the bond between the two states in tourism trade.
Local travel and hospitality sector in J&K have appreciated the move of director tourism Kashmir to personally meet media houses, travel agents and also locals through FM for the promotion of the state tourism and dispel negative perception on Kashmir among potential travellers, the handout added.