Around 1.62 crore tourists have visited Jammu and Kashmir since January 2022, the union territory government said on Thursday. The directorate of information & public relations (DIPR) of the J&K government said the tourist footfall in the Union territory this year is the highest since India’s independence, reported news agency ANI.
The figures were released a day after Union home minister Amit Shah said the region that was a terrorist hotspot earlier has now become a tourist hotspot due to the policies of the Modi government.
Shah said, “under the rule of three families, only ₹15,000 crore investment came in Jammu and Kashmir in 70 years, but under the leadership of Prime Minister Modi, an investment of Rs. 56,000 crore has come in just three years.”
“Earlier the region was a terrorist hotspot but now it has become a tourist hotspot. Earlier, a maximum of six lakh tourists used to visit the Kashmir Valley every year, whereas this year alone till now, 22 lakh tourists have visited the region, giving employment to thousands of youth, and this process will be further strengthened,” he said.
Shah was on a three-day visit to the Jammu and Kashmir which concluded Wednesday. He inaugurated and laid the foundation stone of 240 development projects of about ₹2,000 crore in Srinagar. Before addressing a gathering in Baramulla, the home minister also had his bullet proof glass removed, a gesture he had previously made in October 2021 as he was addressing a rally in Srinagar.
The Union minister juxtaposed two political models that operate in Kashmir, drawing a difference between the “Gupkar model” and that of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi led BJP. He said that Prime Minister Modi had taken the region’s politics down to the “panches, sarpanches, BDC and DDC’s” from being the sole preserve of the “families that ruled Kashmir.”
(With ANI inputs)