Countdown begins for G20 meet in Kashmir

countdown begins for g20 meet in kashmir – The News Mill

ANI Photo | Countdown begins for G20 meet in Kashmir

The stage is all set for the third G20 tourism working group meeting scheduled to take place in Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir from May 22- 24, 2023 under India’s presidency.
According to a report, there has been a resurgence of confidence among the youth that foreign tourists would soon start travelling to Kashmir in great numbers. Tourism, the backbone of Jammu and Kashmir’s economy absorbs the labour force from unskilled to the unorganized sector, which gives impetus to educational unemployment.
Kirmani Aafaq, a recent pass-out graduate from Government Degree College, in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district expressed his optimism that the summit would give the tourism sector a much-needed boost and help youth to earn their livelihood.
“Unemployed youth here in Jammu and Kashmir is hopeful that the countries that had put travel advisories restraining their citizens from travelling to Kashmir will be lifted. As we know dignitaries from 20 different countries will attend this summit here in Srinagar and discuss tourism, unemployment, and socioeconomic development in different regions, with this event we will see a huge footfall of foreign tourists here in the valley. And definitely after a huge footfall, there will be more employment to unemployed youth ” said Kirmani.
“Kashmir is heaven on earth but over the year terrorism has made it hell on earth. Now the Government of India has accelerated the pace of development in Jammu and Kashmir, which had been neglected for decades. Now there will be a further boom in tourism after the G20 summit, which holds more relevance in J-K, as it will go a long way in controlling the menace of terrorism in the Union Territory,” Kirmani further said.
In the words of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, “Today, the development of the people of Jammu and Kashmir, is one of top priorities. Whether it is women empowerment, opportunities for youth, the welfare of the downtrodden, or oppressed our government is taking decisions for the betterment of Jammu and Kashmir.”
According to the report, with great potential to grow further, tourism has a great contribution to employment generation.
With its abundance of pilgrimage, and ecotourism destinations, J-K has the potential to transform its entire economy by creating more jobs.
“Tourism is one of the most important sectors of the economy here in Jammu and Kashmir. Tourism is providing employment to a large number of people in UT. Due to its labour-intensive nature, this industry has a large potential for creating jobs and requires less investment than other economic sectors,” said Hanan Qadir, a Business student from south Kashmir’s Kulgam district.
“Tourism offers a variety of jobs, including those for hotel managers, tour guides, chefs, etc., which further boosts the UT’s economy by raising residents’ incomes and living standards,” he said.
Tourism sector in Jammu and Kashmir is being developed as per the vision of sustainable development goals. Besides, dedicated focus is given to strengthening the hospitality segment and for establishing a robust tourism infrastructure system.
“Tourism gives employment and business to lacs and crores of local people. This business can now flourish as there is peace and tranquillity. LG Manoj Sinha led administration always thought that peace can be made by sincerely addressing to grievances,” said another youth Zaid Ali, hailing from north Kashmir’s Tangmarg. Adding that it is now every Kashmiri’s responsibility to cooperate with the government in making Jammu and Kashmir more people.
A senior official in the administration said that the delegates attending the G20 event here from May 22 will act as brand ambassadors for Jammu and Kashmir and its tourism at the global level.
“G20 Tourism Working Group Meeting is taking place in Srinagar which in itself is a major international event. We are working to attract the attention of the world and this event is a major opportunity to promote Jammu and Kashmir at a global scale,” the official said.
Kashmir has been experiencing a record-breaking year for tourism. For the first time in the history of Jammu and Kashmir, a record 1.88 crore tourists visited UT in the year 2022 to enjoy the beauty of various famed tourist spots.
The report said that with the launch of the new J-K Film Policy in 2021, Jammu and Kashmir has emerged as the favourite shooting destination for the film industry and permission has been granted for the shooting of more than 150 films and web series in less than two years.
Officials in the tourism department said that Jammu and Kashmir is now being promoted on all possible global forums and that is the reason the UT is witnessing the highest-ever tourist footfall in recent years.
“Since last year, there has been a good influx of tourists, and we are optimistic that this trend will continue in the future. We have planned a variety of events in an effort to attract tourists. Furthermore, we are trying our best to promote Jammu and Kashmir on global forums,” the official said.
Urging people to make the upcoming working group meeting of Tourism Delegates from G20 nations a grand success, Chief Secretary, Dr Arun Kumar Mehta said on Wednesday (May 17) said that the mega international event will help boost tourism industry in Jammu and Kashmir.
The Chief Secretary said that J-K witnessed a huge footfall of both domestic and foreign tourists last year and that the number may go fourfold if people together with the administration work to make the upcoming G20 event successful.
“Let’s all work together to make the event a grand success. G20 working group meeting of tourism delegates from G20 nations will help boost the tourism industry in J-K,” Mehta told reporters after launching a week-long Solar Expo-23 at Kashmir Haat here.
Regarding projects being executed under Srinagar Smart City Ltd (SSCL) in the city, Dr Mehta said the Polo-View market was inaugurated recently while work on the Left Jhelum Riverfront has also been completed.
“I would like to reiterate that Srinagar has never experienced such rapid development before. Most of the projects under Srinagar Smart City Ltd have been completed in Srinagar,” he added.
J-K BJP president Ravinder Raina said that the G20 meeting in Srinagar is a “big opportunity” for Jammu and Kashmir to showcase its true potential.
“We are marching forward with the common vision of peace, progress and prosperity. Delegates attending the G20 event here in the coming days will act as brand ambassadors for Jammu and Kashmir and its tourism at the global level, boosting local businesses. It is an opportune moment for Jammu and Kashmir to showcase its cultural richness and tourism potential on the world stage. G20 will give a new height to J-K’s growth, boost to the limitless potential of tourism and hospitality sector and enhance economic prosperity to all sections of society,” Raina said.
“The time has changed and has changed for the good. A common man in J-K has heaved a sigh of relief as there have been no disruptions in his life. The elements inimical to peace have been taken care of as their entire ecosystem has been shattered. It’s an honour for J&K as our land would host such an important international meet which will be attended by the representatives of the most powerful countries in the world,” Raina further added.
Not only tourism, but the Government of India is encouraging various projects involving substantial investment and public expenditure on schemes for employment generation. Besides this, various flagship programmes of the Government such as Make in India, Start-up India, Stand-up India, Digital India, Housing for All etc. are also oriented towards generating employment opportunities.
This year the gains achieved in the past three years are expected to reach new heights as the historical G-20 Summit is taking place in three days’ time and more so the third record-breaking tourist season can bring big positive social change in the lives of people of Jammu and Kashmir.
Meanwhile, Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) Kashmir Zone Vijay Kumar on Thursday said that all the security arrangements have been made for the upcoming G20 summit in Union Territory.
ADGP Vijay Kumar said that a three-tier security will be put in place for the event.
While talking to ANI, ADGP Vijay Kumar said, “We have made all the security arrangements for the upcoming event. There will be three-tier security in place for the event. Anti-drone equipment is being set up. We are taking the help of NSG and the Army for the same. For the water body- Dal Lake – we will depute a team of MARCOS, also a Police team will be present there.”
G20 tourism working group meeting under India’s presidency in Srinagar is slated to be held on May 24-26, 2023.

This report is filed by ANI news service.

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