Tourism in Kashmir: Development and economic impact
Muhammad Arsalan Wani
Kashmir is one of the most famous tourist destinations of India in the Himalayas. The Valley is filled with assorted rich tourism resources. For the sustainable use of these tourism resources, a proper tourism policy is requisite. Subsequently, the present study aims to examine government policy for the growth and development of tourism in Kashmir region; besides, the assessment of tourism potentials and tourist flow in Kashmir is added endeavour of the study. According to the findings, ministry of tourism government of Jammu and Kashmir has framed a draft of tourism policy so far. The draft tourism policy constitutes developmental and promotional tactics for existing and new forms of tourism, abiding the sustainable tourism approach, development of human resource and tourism infrastructure, ensuring safety and security, and encouraging tourism education within the state. Moreover, the state government is working hard to promote eco-tourism and offbeat tourist destinations in collaboration with several other concerned bodies.
Jammu and Kashmir State has a tremendous potential of becoming a major global tourist destination. Importance of tourism in J&K economy is known for decades now and its role in economic development has been an area of great interest from policy perspective. To understand the economic impact of tourism in the J&K state, present paper uses secondary sources of data and tries to examine various parameters of economic development such as tourist inflow, employment generation, State Gross Domestic Product, development of infrastructure and regional development. We found apart from agriculture sector, tourism sector is the most popular source of income and employment generation for the state economy.