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National News Sourced Wired

Kashmir tourism looking down the barrel due to poor infrastructure

Srinagar, May 8 (ANI): Lack of adequate infrastructure disappointed tourists visiting Kashmir, even as authorities urged the government to take adequate steps to cope with the increasing number of visitors to the valley.

Director of the tourism department, Talat Parvez said better infrastructure would provide impetus to tourism.

“Around 50,000 tourists visit per day during the peak season and the bed capacity which is registered is around 42,000. The remaining 8,000 get spilled due to which they don’t get rooms to stay, and sometimes they do not get to stay at the place of their liking. Last year we faced this difficulty as a large number of tourists came here. Not only the number of tourist increased but they have high expectations, there is increase in quality tourist, high end tourists started coming and currently we do not have many high end hotels,” said Parvez in Srinagar.

Kashmir’s scenic beauty attracts the tourists from different parts of the country as well as abroad.

The tourism department called for better accommodation facilities, uninterrupted power supply, and better hospitality so that tourists continue to come in large numbers to the valley.

Tourism is the backbone of Kashmir valley; around eighty percent of the people depend on tourism that generates maximum employment in the state.

The houseboats said that there was need to upgrade the facilities as the tourists these days have high expectations.

“There should be adequate facilities for the tourists coming from different parts of the country and abroad. Unlike in the past, the expectations of the tourists have increased. They demand five star hotels to stay, deluxe room, house boats should be deluxe, there should be new house boats but the government does not give permission for constructing new house boats, but they should at least allow the reconstruction and renovation of the old houseboats,” said an agitated Abdul Razak, a Shikara (boat) owner.

The peak tourism season in the valley runs till August.

Kashmir was once dubbed the Switzerland of the east. It was once a Mecca for climbers, skiers, honeymooners and filmmakers drawn to the state’s soaring peaks, fruit orchards and timber houseboats bobbing on Dal Lake in Srinagar, the summer capital. (ANI)