J&K LG Manoj Sinha promotes sustainable tourism at J&K Conclave

J&K LG Shri Manoj Sinha, addressed the ‘J&K Tourism Development Conclave’ organised by the J&K Tourism Department in Srinagar on June 26. In his address, he highlighted the Union Territory Administration’s concerted efforts to establish a sustainable tourism model aimed at making J&K one of the world’s most sought-after tourist destinations. He noted the remarkable post-COVID-19 growth in tourism, with a staggering 300% year-on-year increase in foreign tourists. He attributed this success to the introduction of new policies, the creation of a conducive environment, industry stimulus, and the development of new experiences that generate year-round employment opportunities. Under the leadership of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, Jammu and Kashmir has entered a new era that has garnered international interest and encouraged domestic tourism. This transformation is significantly enriching local communities and aiding in the construction of a modern tourism industry. The increase in domestic tourist arrivals, according to the Lt Governor, is a testament to the holistic approach taken by the administration to develop the tourism sector and foster partnerships between the industry and communities to stimulate related business activities and employment. The conclave brought together experts and members from various industries, including film, trade, and travel management agencies, to deliberate on strategies, development models, and innovative approaches to promote sustainable tourism practices in J&K. The LG underscored the importance of collective efforts to explore the potential of adventure, border, heritage, offbeat destinations, golf, bird-watching, and agro-tourism in the region. He also identified destination weddings as a key driver for tourism growth in Jammu and Kashmir. One of the highlights of his address was the emphasis on fostering private investment in the tourism and hospitality sector. He noted the significant return of Bollywood to the valley, facilitated by a competitive film policy that has created a vibrant film ecosystem. Jammu and Kashmir have become a preferred destination for filmmakers, and he urged industry representatives to create a roadmap to maximize this potential. Quality standards and certification mechanisms were identified as crucial for maintaining high standards in the tourism and hospitality sectors. The Lt Governor also provided insights on brand-building and the promotion of J&K’s tourism sector through innovative marketing, IT, and digital tools. The past few years have seen an unprecedented influx of tourists to the Union Territory. To sustain this momentum, he also stressed the importance of ease of travel, high customer value, and professional and skilled manpower. He called for strategic collaborations among the administration, community, travel trade, and industry players to enhance tourist experiences. During the two-day conclave, participants will engage in discussions on strategies and innovative approaches to promote sustainable tourism practices in J&K. Prominent figures from the film and entertainment industry, including Imtiaz Ali, Vishal Bhardwaj, Kabir Khan, and Sanjay Suri, are in attendance, along with key officials and stakeholders such as G20 Sherpa Amitabh Kant, Advisor to the Lt Governor Rajeev Rai Bhatnagar, Chief Secretary Atal Dulloo, Commissioner Secretary of the Tourism Department Yasha Mudgal, and various industry leaders. The conclave is expected to yield valuable insights and inputs to further propel the growth and development of Jammu and Kashmir’s tourism sector, ensuring that the region continues to attract tourists from around the globe while benefiting local communities.

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