Jammu & Kashmir has always been in a state of flux. Mostly due to terrorism and political instabiity, the state has never experienced long lasting peace and economic development. Tourism and investments form a vital cog in the government’s strategy to merge the valley into the national mainstream. But due to the pandemic and the subsequent recession, tourism came to a grinding halt. But now that the pandemic is gradually fading away, the future looks bright for Jammu & Kashmir.
In a positive development for the state, the J&K Chief Secretary, Dr. Arun Kumar Mehta, has stated that the state administration expects heavy tourist influx in 2022, reported Rising Kashmir. While tourism started to increase during the second half of 2021 itself, the footfall is expected to shatter all previous records this year. The Chief Secretary’s remarks came when he was opening the famous Tulip Garden at the start of the season.
Dr Mehta also mentioned the role of revamped infrastructure, including vastly improved road and air connectivity, for the growth of tourism in J&K. The improved state of the Jammu-Srinagar highway has reduced the overall travel time. The security situation in the state is said to have greatly improved in the last two years. The government has also taken upon themselves to promote J&K as a tourist spot across the country. All these factors will act as a catalyst in increasing the tourism this year in the state. Dr Mehta further said that the administration has developed unseen tourist spots and that the tourists will have greater places to explore apart from Pahalgam and Gulmarg.
These developments surely offer a more wholesome experience for the tourists. The response to these government initiatives to increase tourism is visible on the ground as the last quarter of 2021 recorded 4 lakh tourists.