Udayavni Special

Youth’s death could be last nail in Kashmir tourism coffin: Industry


Team Udayavani, May 9, 2018, 10:39 AM IST

Srinagar: The fragile tourism industry in Kashmir has taken another blow with the death of a tourist hit by stone pelters, and the sector fears that the incident may further affect the already falling footfall in the troubled Valley.

The killing of the Chennai youth could be the proverbial final nail in the coffin of tourism in Kashmir, Ashfaq Siddiq, president Travel Agents Association Kashmir (TAAK), said today. The tourist. 22-year-old R Thirumani, was critically injured in a stone pelting incident at Narbal yesterday and died later in the day of head injuries, triggering outrage and concern.

This is a sad incident which should not have happened. Unfortunately, we feel that it will have an impact on tourist arrivals to Kashmir. I think it will be the final nail in the coffin, Siddiq told PTI. Tourism in the state has already suffered because of prolonged periods of unrest in the Valley, hoteliers said. 

There has been a steep fall in the number of domestic tourists since 2016, when the killing of militant Burhan Muzaffar Wani by security forces in July that year led to a prolonged period of violence and stone pelting in the Valley.

The number of tourists fell from 3,91,902 in the first four months of 2016 to 1,69,727 in the same period the next year. The number in the corresponding period this year was 1,54,062, officials said. The TAAK president said the association feared cancellation of bookings by tourists in the days to come.

It is obvious that cancellations will happen and there might be some hardline elements who might even call for an absolute boycott of Kashmir, he said. There is already panic in some quarters. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami today asked his counterpart Mehbooba Mufti to ensure the safe return of the 130 tourists from his state who were in Kashmir.

“I asked Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti to help officials of the Tamil Nadu government for the safe return of the tourists,” he said in Chennai. Tourism Kashmir director Mehmood Shah, condemning the incident, said the department apprehended a fall in the number of visitors to the Valley.

It is an unfortunate incident and we are deeply pained,” Shah told PTI. Asked if the incident would have any impact on the number of tourist arrivals, he said cancellations were likely.  It will have an impact. Cancellations may happen, he said.

Last year, about 12 lakh tourists visited Kashmir. While the number of domestic tourists has halved in the last two years, the number of foreign tourists has, however, doubled. In the first four months of 2018, there were 21,631 foreign tourists, up from 10,767 in the same period last year, the officials said.

The tourism trade in Kashmir condemned the killing, saying that those who had thrown stones at the vehicle in which the tourist was travelling were not well wishers of Kashmir but cold-blooded murders . We condemn every such killing whether it is of a Kashmiri or a tourist. Whosoever has committed this incident is not a well wisher of Kashmiris. He is a bloody, cold-blooded murderer,” Siddiq said later at press conference with other stakeholders from travel, tourism and trade bodies.

Siddiq said Kashmir is known for its hospitality and tourists should not be scared as they are our guests . Kashmir is known for its ethos and hospitality. Tourists are our guests and never has it happened before. These incidents should not have an overall impact. They still are our guests, he said, apologising for the incident.

Udayavani is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel and stay updated with the latest news.

Top News

We are not anti-Muslim: Union minister Prahlad Joshi

Bengaluru: Activists to perform ‘Pothole pooja’ to embarrass govt

The ‘Passive Voice’: Will Team India mentorship help Dhoni set CSK dug-out template in coming years?

Puttur: RSS leader accused of raping minor Dalit girl; Dalit organizations demand strict action

BJP mocks CWC as ‘parivar bachao working committee’, slams it for not reacting to Singhu killing

Elections to Congress president’s post to be held in September 2022: Sources

Kerala rains: Atleast 10 missing in Kottayam, IAF assistance sought

Related Articles More

Man arrested for selling church property worth more than Rs 50 crore

Sasikala visits Jaya mausoleum, keeps alive her bid to make a political comeback

Fake currency racket busted in UP, 3 arrested

‘Hindutva facing threat from neo Hindus, not outsiders’: Uddhav’s barbs at BJP

Steady Covid vaccination pace among reasons behind low daily cases in Delhi, say experts

MUST WATCH

NEWS BULLETIN 16-10-2021

Rescue work at Kapu

Mysore Dasara 2021 Jamboo Savari

Mylaralinga Swamy Temple Pallaki Chariot

Vijayadashami Celebration at Humnabad


Latest Additions

Man arrested for selling church property worth more than Rs 50 crore

We are not anti-Muslim: Union minister Prahlad Joshi

Sasikala visits Jaya mausoleum, keeps alive her bid to make a political comeback

Bengaluru: Activists to perform ‘Pothole pooja’ to embarrass govt

The ‘Passive Voice’: Will Team India mentorship help Dhoni set CSK dug-out template in coming years?

Thanks for visiting Udayavani

You seem to have an Ad Blocker on.
To continue reading, please turn it off or whitelist Udayavani.