SRINAGAR: In a bid to revive the tourism industry in the valley, the tour operators here in Jammu and Kashmir are gearing up for the upcoming winter season amid the Covid-19 outbreak.
As the coronavirus cases are slowly declining in the Union Territory, tour operators are hoping that tourism activities will improve in Kashmir. "We all know, how due to Covid-19 global trade has suffered. As things are improving, we are hoping that tourism will pick up.
The tourism industry seems to be getting back on track in the last two months," said Showkat, a tour operator. Stressing on need to revive the tourism industry, Showkat said that they want the situation to go from 'new normal to good normal'. "We are working with the Tourism Department, and we will promote tourism by participating in the roadshows and trade fairs." Nisar Ahmad, Director of Tourism talked about the preparedness of tourist operators, saying that they want to convey a message that Kashmir is well-prepared to welcome tourists with all health protocols in place.
"We are holding meetings with all leading tour operators and tour managers. Particularly, in this upcoming winter season, we want to invite the people from across the country to Jammu and Kashmir," said Ahmad.
Meanwhile, Nasir Shah, Chairman of Kashmir leisure and pilgrimage tour operators said that people in the valley are keen to resume tourism activity, particularly in places like Gulmarg. Recently, tour and travel operators from Maharashtra had initiated an 'Unlock Kashmir Tourism Campaign' with support from the Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Department.
Around 70 travel operators and some writers and journalists from Mumbai had visited Kashmir in this regard. "This tourist delegation from Maharashtra will become our ambassadors who will further inform their friends and neighbours about Kashmir's unique beauty and charm. Word of mouth is a powerful tool for promotion and we are trying to garner the benefit of the same for the welfare of Kashmiri tourism," Ahmad had said. According to the Union Health Ministry, there are 5,700 active cases in Jammu and Kashmir. ANI