Minister of State for Tourism, Ms. Priya Sethi informed the House that development of border tourism has already been introduced in the State.
Replying to a question by Mr. Raja Manzoor Ahmed, the Minister said that a border tourism circuit, Development of Border Tourism Kashmir has been conceived under Prime Minister’s Special Package, which among other areas also includes Teetwal, Keran in Karnah.
The Minister said that a detailed project report for the purpose is under preparation. She said the execution of works would be subject to approval of DPR and release of funds by the Union Ministry of Tourism.
In reply to another question by Mr. Nawang Rigzin Jora, the Minister said since the parking bays are limited at Leh Airport and window of operations is limited, the problems of shortage of flights will persist till the expansion of terminal and apron takes place.
The Minister said that however, a meeting was held under the chairmanship of Economic Advisor Union Ministry of Aviation on July 2, 2013 at Leh with the District Administration and representatives of LAHDC, besides the representatives of tourism trade alliance and other stock holders. She said the chairman apart from various assurance taken up in respect of speeding up of completion of infrastructure problems constraining augmentation of flight to Leh suggested to reduce 21% VAT on ATF in the region by the state government which is accounting for 50% of operating cost of flight.
The Minister said moreover, air tariff is linked to the market driven demand and supply mechanics. She said the state government has no control over the air fares. She said however, the only solution is increase in number of flights which will be possible only once adequate parking stands are created by Airport Authority of India in Leh Airport.
2015 Kashmir Despatch