‘Terrorism or Tourism’

April 12, 2017 0 Comments EDITORIAL 157 Views
‘Terrorism or Tourism’

With the recent statement of Prime Ministe, Narradera Modi on choosing Tourism over “Terrorism”, a befitting reply has come from the security apparatus of the State, killing eight unarmed civilian in the Kashmir Valley. The PM was addressing gathering during the Chennai-Nashri tunnel in Udhampur in Jammu region. There is much more for the New Delhi to look into the Kashmir situation beyond tourism prism. It’s good if State witnesses development on every sector, but not at the cost of human lives.o Recently in a positive development, the State Cabinet accorded sanction to the creation of Tourism Development Authority, Tosa Maidan. Being one of the largest meadows in Kashmir valley surrounded by dense forests, Tosa Maidan has the potential of being developed into a popular tourism destination. Besides the normal sightseeing, Tosa Maidan has a good potential of adventure including winter sports, hiking, mountaineering, horse riding, para gliding, rock climbing, trekking etc. The Cabinet also accorded sanction to the creation of Tourism Development Authority, Shopain-Dobjun-Peer-ki-Gali & Tourism Development Authority Bani-Basohli alongwith creation of 21 posts of various categories for each Tourism Authority. Government needs to develop locations having tourist potential to increase tourist footfall which can generate employment and boost the socio- economic conditions of the locals. At the same time, it needs to consider the fate of tourist resorts like Pahalgam and Sonamarg which have witnessed serious threat to their ecology. We have not spared even the meadows and foothills of these resorts from vandalization. Authorities have failed to implement a comprehensive policy to safeguard the natural beauty and ecological balance of these places. Development and improvement in infrastructure should be a priority of the government but it should not be at the cost of destroying or disturbing the ecological balance. There is a need for employing sustainable and eco-tourism initiatives in the state. There is a need to sensitize the policy makers and tourism stakeholders towards the importance of sustainability tourism for destination development and identify areas of eco tourism initiative that can be undertaken across the various regions of Jammu and Kashmir. Travel is evolving rapidly all over the world and there is a visible shift from mass tourism to niche tourism. The state’s tourism industry needs to rise to this level and evolve into a ‘niche destination’. There is a need to focus on evolving and promoting niche tourism and destinations with focus on orchard tourism and wedding destination tourism among others. There is a need for adopting a policy of responsible tourism without compromising the environment and ecology which is the core issue that drives tourism industry in the State. Eco-tourism is a significant contributor to resource conversation and environmental protection. We have the natural beauty that offers great tourism potential but the government must work on improving the facilities.

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