Chief Secretary, Dr Arun Kumar Mehta on Saturday conducted an extensive tour of interiors of Srinagar’s Dal Lake and took stock of various ongoing works for the development of Model In-situ Rehabilitation and Tourist Villages.
The Chief Secretary was accompanied by GOC 15 Corps, Lt. General DP Pandey; Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, Pandurang K Pole; Deputy Commissioner, Srinagar; Commissioner SMC; VC LCMA; Directors of various departments including Tourism, Handloom and Handicraft, Animal Husbandry, Sheep Husbandry, Horticulture, Agriculture, Floriculture, Fisheries, Skill Development and Chief Engineers of UEED, PHE, KPDCL and PWD besides other officers.
During the tour, the Chief Secretary stressed upon the officers to prepare a comprehensive plan for holistic development of hamlets in Dal Lake to create tourist villages.
Dr. Mehta directed officers to frame a plan under VC LCMA for five villages; Kachri Mohalla, Sofi Mohalla, Tinda Mohallah, Akhoon Mohalla, Vegetable market and flooting garden on pilot basis for the development of tourist villages having all basic facilities for inhabitants as well as tourists and local visitors.
The Chief Secretary also asked the officers that the development of tourist villages should be carried in such a manner that they will provide home stay facilities to tourists.
While asking for handholding of youth of these areas, Dr. Mehta directed the officers of Handloom & Handicraft and Skill Development to establish skill training centers in these areas for imparting skill training to educated youth of these hamlets in relevant trades.
He also directed other officers to utilize schemes of respective departments for the benefit of educated local unemployed youth and aware maximum people about those schemes.
Dr. Mehta, on the occasion asked the officers to explore the possibilities under mission youth scheme for development of these Model villages and stressed on creation of youth clubs in these areas and their involvement in sustainable development of these hamlets.
Highlighting about creating awareness among people regarding various welfare schemes, the Chief Secretary directed officers of Fisheries, Floriculture, Agriculture, Animal Husbandry and Sheep Husbandry to acquaint people about the beneficiary schemes implemented by their respective departments so that local people would get employment and reap maximum benefits out of them.
During the tour, several Dal dwellers also interacted with the Chief Secretary and apprised him regarding various issues like dredging of channels, power, washroom for tourists, development of parks besides sought technological guidance from various departments on various issues related to conservation of Dal Lake.
Earlier, the Chief Secretary also visited Char Chinar and inspected its ongoing restoration works.
Meanwhile, Director, Tourism , Kashmir, Dr. GN Itoo said popularization of local cultures, cuisine, and languages is part of the promotional campaigns of the Department and Department is committed to provide a wholesome local experience of these components to the tourists coming here.
Addressing the valedictory function of a cultural conference, the Director Tourism said cultural promotion and exchanges are the fundamental components of tourism and the Department, fully aware of this, has a set mechanism of promoting local cultures, languages and cuisine among the tourists visiting the UT.
Director Tourism launched the Hot Air Balloon adventure facility at Zabarwan Park, Srinagar.