BR News Desk
Srinagar: From July onwards, tourists in heavy numbers might throng to border areas of Jammu and Kashmir as Sarhad, a Maharashtra based Non – Government Organization is collaborating with Jammu and Kashmir administration to promote border tourism of the union territory.
Encouraged by the flow of tourists to the frontier areas of Kashmir, Sarhad has stepped forward to promote and assist the border people to explore the potential of tourism.
From training the localities to taking tourists along LoC, the NGO has framed a promotional strategy for border tourism in Kashmir.
As per the NGO, the Jammu and Kashmir administration has agreed to collaborate with them in promoting tourism in the border areas of Jammu and Kashmir.
“The initiative will be launched on July 19 at Lehota village in Doda and Dardpora village in Kupwara. J&K Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha has agreed to inaugurate it at Lehota. The basic concept behind this programme is that people should know that there is no fear in visiting the border areas,” President of Sarhad. Sanjay Nahar said.
He said the NGO has identified three villages in Kashmir where people will be trained in sustainable border tourism. “We didn’t want any financial assistance from the government but just their support in the form of nod. In Kashmir, we have identified Dardapora in Kupwara district, Aragam in Bandipora district, Sopore in Baramulla district
Nahar said they will take tourists to these border villages to experience the life along LoC.
“Tourists will be taken to these villages. They will experience the life and hardships of villagers on the country’s border. The initiative will be driven and propelled by the locals of the villages concerned,” Nahar said.
Pertinently, for the first time, border areas of Kashmir are attracting headlines for good reasons as tourists are flocking to these areas after adherence to the ceasefire by India and Pakistan.
The locals from border areas have started providing lodging facilities to the tourists by converting their homes into homestays.
G N Itoo, Director, Tourism Kashmir, said the department is focusing to promote the rural tourism of Kashmir.
“The idea is to focus on border areas like Gurez, Keran, Machil, and Tangdhar – as tourist places. We have made plans and are in consultation with district administration and India Army to promote these areas for adventure tourism,” he said.