J-K regaining its past glory in tourism
20 September 2005
Jammu: The ongoing bonhomie between India and Pakistan has helped Kashmir valley regain its position as most favoured tourist destination as a record one million holiday-makers visited the paradise on earth this season. Improvement in ties between New Delhi and Islamabad has led to a significant change in ground situation here and nearly 10 lakh tourists visited the valley this season so far, state Tourism Minister Ghulam Hassan Mir said. This is for the first time in the history of Kashmir that such a large number of tourists visited the valley. In the peace time, over seven lakh tourists visited the valley in 1988 which was a record itself. Mir said a great rise in tourist inflow during last three years was witnessed in the state and it is expected to touch 22 lakhs by 2010, the Tourism Minister said. He said improvement in relations between India and Pakistan has created many openings for the people of the state and the future holds bright for them. Mir said that with the opening of Srinagar- Muzaffarabad road a dream of the people of the state has been realized and people are able to move freely across the border. He said the PDP-led coalition government accorded top priority to the tourism industry considering its importance in the state's economy.