Srinagar: After hitting the headlines during Operation Vijay launched by the Indian Army to regain control of outposts taken over by Pakistan in 1999, Kargil district of frontier Ladakh region is on the path to find a place in world tourism.
"Kargil will be brought on the world map of tourism shortly after necessary infrastructure is developed in the district," senior government officials told a meeting chaired by Tourism Minister Nawang Ringzin Jora here.
The meeting, convened to review the functioning of Kargil and Leh Development Authorities, was informed that the main focus of the Kargil Development Authority is on the development of tourism-related infrastructure.
"The Kargil Development Authority is also focusing on exploiting tourism potential areas," a spokesman said, adding that river rafting, mountaineering and trekking will be encouraged.
The meeting was informed that Kargil Development Authority has submitted a proposal for an amount of about Rs eight crore under Circuit Development in Kargil, to the Centre for approval.
With regard to tourism activities in Leh, the meeting was informed that nearly 1.8 lakh tourists, including 36,662 foreigners, enjoyed their holiday in the region last year.
"Adventure tourism in Ladakh has gained much popularity in the recent times," the spokesman said.
The Tourism Development Authority, Leh, has taken up various works in the district at an estimated cost of Rs 11.02 crore under state sector during this year.
Under the Centre sector, works for an amount of Rs 18.21 crore have been taken up by the Authority, out of which several schemes have been completed and others are in final stages, the spokesman said.
Local youth are also being trained in the tourist trade to meet the growing demand of skilled manpower to run professional establishments.
"A Food Craft Institute has been approved for an amount of Rs 5.83 crore for which land measuring 24 kanals has been allotted," the spokesman said.
The meeting was attended by Minister of State for Tourism Nasir Aslam Wani, Chief Executive Councillor, Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC), Leh, Rigzin Spallbar, Chief Executive Councillor, LAHDC, Kargil, Kachoo Ahmad Ali Khan among others.