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CUK’S deptt of tourism studies celebrates WTD

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Ganderbal: The Department of Tourism Studies at Central University of Kashmir (CUK) on Tuesday celebrated the World Tourism Day (WTD) under the theme “Rethinking Tourism,” at varsity’s Green Campus.
Vice Chancellor CUK Prof. Farooq Ahmad Shah, Dean School of Business Studies Prof. Fayaz Ahmad Nikka, Head Department of Tourism Studies Puducherry University Prof. Sampad Kumar Swain, Secretary General Travel Agents Association of Kashmir (TAAK) Sajjad Ahmad Kralyari, DTS Coordinator Dr. Faizan Ashraf Mir, Assistant Prof. Dr Ashaq Hussain Najar, faculty members, students, senior functionaries of the university and other staff members were present at the occasion.
Addressing the participants, Vice Chancellor Prof. Farooq Ahmad Shah said the tourism industry was contributing immensely towards the socio-economic development of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh.
“This year, more than 17 lakh tourists visited the Kashmir valley and the need of the hour is to further consolidate, strengthen and improve the infrastructure across the tourist destinations, in order to cope with the ever-growing tourist rush and to provide better amenities to the visitors,” Prof. said.
He however underscored the need of preserving the fragile ecology and environment while taking up works at the respective tourist destinations.
“The focus should be on sustainable development of tourism but not at the expense of future generations,” he said.
Speaking on the occasion, Prof. Fayaz Ahmad Nikka described the WTD theme as a significant one saying that the the tourism not only provides sustenance to lakhs of people, but also facilitates the travel of individuals, aspiring to explore the world and unravel the hidden treasures of nature.
He said the authorities should also promote other forms of tourism including pilgrim, heritage, art and craft and medical tourism to further boost the industry in the Valley.
“The people of Kashmir are facing stiff competition in agriculture, horticulture and arts work, from other states. The need of the hour is to address the tourism related issues so that Kashmir would once again emerge as the favorite tourist destination, not only for the countrymen, but across the world,” he said.
In his online lecture, Prof. Sampad Kumar Swain, said, the objective of celebrating WTD was to sensitize and aware the people, especially the students, about the significance of the tourism sector in the overall socio-economic and cultural development of the country.
“The tourism has a high potential to contribute towards the overall GDP of the country,” he said.
He said tourism crosses all the man-made boundaries and allows the people to witness and feel the culture, cuisine, and beauty of other countries.
Addressing the participants, Sajjad Ahmad Kralyari said the tourism sector in Kashmir was facing acute shortage of professionals and desperately needs them in order to provide quality service to the visitors.
“The academicians have to play a key role in grooming the professionals,” he said, adding that with the tourism industry growing exponentially in Kashmir, the sector can provide employment to thousands of specialized youths.
In his address, department coordinator Dr. Faizan Ashraf Mir said the department continuously celebrates the day in order to educate the students about the importance of the tourism sector in the overall development of the country.

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