Seeks removal of CLU charges, ensures equal promotion of tourism sites across both regions, expansion of Winter Tourism in Jammu Region

JK News Today

Jammu, March, 02: Gaurav Gupta, Secretary of Jammu Club and former General Secretary of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, held a significant meeting with the Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir, Manoj Sinha and discussed various critical issues pertinent to the Jammu region’s growth and prosperity.

In a memorandum submitted to the Lieutenant Governor, Gaurav Gupta conveyed his sincere appreciation for the remarkable progress witnessed in the Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory under his visionary leadership. Highlighting the transformative initiatives undertaken by the administration, including the establishment of new industrial estates, prestigious institutions such as IIT and AIIMS, and the expansion of vital infrastructure projects, he commended the Lieutenant Governor’s unwavering commitment to the betterment of the region.

Raising concern over some serious issues during the meeting, Gaurav Gupta emphasized the need to address hurdles faced by entrepreneurs in tourism development projects due to unwarranted imposition of Change of Land Use (CLU) charges.
He apprised the Lt Governor that the Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Department has strategically identified regions such as Jammu, Reasi, Katra, Pancheri, and several others for tourism development initiatives. The recent tendering process initiated by the government to engage private entities, both local and outside from J&K, in the development of these tourism-centric regions. However, despite these positive strides, they are faced with a concerning issue hindering the progress of these projects. Specifically, some authorities are impeding the smooth execution of initiatives by imposing unwarranted hurdles under the guise of Change of Land Use (CLU) regulations which was not earlier mentioned in Notice Inviting Tender (NIT). He emphasized that the land allocated to the bidders is on a lease basis. Consequently, the imposition of CLU charges, typically applicable in cases involving ownership rights of land, is unwarranted and unjustifiable or may be the issue of oversight, he added.
To ensure the seamless implementation of these vital tourism projects and to foster a conducive environment for entrepreneurial growth, he sought intervention of Lt Governor to the authorities concerned to adhere to the principles of ‘Ease of Doing Business’.

Gaurav Gupta raised concerns regarding the disparity in promoting tourism potential sites between the Jammu and Kashmir regions on official social media handles of the J&K Tourism Department. He said that the main objective of official social media handle of Jammu & Kashmir Tourism Department is to promote the tourism potential sites of Jammu and Kashmir regions equally with a sole aim to increase the footfall of tourists in the Union Territory. But it predominantly promoting the Kashmir province only and deliberately neglecting the tourism potential sites of Jammu region.
“If the social media handle of J & K Tourism Department remains solely focused on Kashmir, then the inclusion of ‘J’ in the social media handle loses its purpose,” he questioned.
To address this disparity, the government should instruct the authorities managing the official J&K Tourism official social media handle in Srinagar to share the credentials (rights of handling the page that is User name and Password) with the Jammu tourism authorities so that they can have equal opportunities to promote the tourism sites of the Jammu region on J&K Tourism social media platforms as well, he sought.

Gaurav Gupta lauded the government for hosting annually winter sports competitions in Gulmarg but simultaneously it’s crucial to acknowledge the untapped potential of several areas in the Jammu region, including Doda, Bhadarwah, and Kishtwar, which experience heavy snowfall comparable to Gulmarg. Despite their ideal conditions for winter sports and recreation, these areas remain underdeveloped in terms of infrastructure and promotion.
He urged the Lt Governor to take proactive measures in promoting winter tourism in the Jammu region, including organizing competitions, establishing ski resorts, and marketing these destinations.

He also proposed hosting international-level summits in picturesque areas of Jammu Province, such as Patnitop, to boost tourism and leverage its natural beauty.

Gupta stressed the importance of showcasing Jammu’s rich cultural heritage, natural beauty, and economic potential on an international platform to attract investments, tourists, and collaborations.
Gupta also commended the ongoing Artificial Lake project on River Tawi, recognizing its potential in enhancing the aesthetic appeal and recreational opportunities in the region.
Gaurav Gupta expressed his optimism about the bright future of Jammu and Kashmir under the esteemed leadership of the Honorable Lieutenant Governor, Shri Manoj Sinha. He noted with appreciation that the Lieutenant Governor gave a patient hearing to the issues raised by him and assured to diligently address them