Written by Ch. Faisal Mehmood
This summer Gilgit-Baltistan and AJK, both areas had wonderful tourism season. The tourism activities, by all intent and purposes remained satisfactory and people related to tourism industry, directly or in directly, all expressed their happiness and satisfaction.
With the start of extra flights by PIA, as was reported in our previous issue, the tourism of the area will further be benefitted but biggest benefit and revolution is expected by the introduction of latest telecommunication technology by the government for the people and tourism sector of AJK and Gilgit-Baltistan. The government is going to launch the latest and fast paced information technology services, 3G & 4G in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) and Gilgit-Baltistan by February next year.
The technology, 3G/4G in these far-flung areas will bring major socio-economic change and will boost both domestic & international tourism, the main stay of the area.
Gilgit-Baltistan, home to five of the “eight-thousanders” and to more than fifty peaks above 7,000 metres and the region is also home to some of the world’s highest mountain ranges will in the finger tips of the whole world.
Our Northern Areas; which are known to be the heaven on earth are now once again very peaceful and safe and are open for tourists. It is the prime duty of all governments to promote domestic tourism and encourage masses to travel and see those areas. The local hotel industry should keep their room rates very reasonable so that they can lure back the domestic visitors. This is the time for tourism organizations, corporations, tour operators and the ministry of tourism to act and work harder to help stand our tourism industry on stronge footing. Advertising campaigns, fam trips for media and celebrities, plus economical tour packages can be of great help. Tourism use to be the main livelihood of the people of that region, which they lost for many years. Now that the things are better, again they have all the right to look towards their fellow citizens for helping them back on their feet. It is time that we should all vow to ourselves to go to Murree, Swat, AJK, Gilgit-Batistan and many other tourist destinations in the country in huge numbers so that our friends there can get their source of revenue back.
The Gilgit-Baltistan & AJK Governments appear to be proactive and making all possible arrangement to provide safe and peaceful holidays to the foreign and local tourists.