By Majid Nabi
Srinagar- The delegates who arrived to attend 3rd G20 working group meeting in Srinagar, Tuesday hailed India’s move to host the major international event in J&K, saying it’s the collective job of all international emissaries to promote Kashmir as a top travel destination of the world.
The visiting delegates heaped praises on Kashmir, calling it a paradise on earth in terms of its natural beauty, and promised to promote the region on a global scale to draw in more and more tourists.
Chang Jeebok, a Korean delegate claimed that his country supports India’s G20 Presidency and hopes that the joint efforts of both nations will attract Korean tourists to visit Kashmir.
The G20 delegate, while hoping for the grand success of the first significant international event being held in J&K, said 50 years of diplomatic relations between India and Korea will undoubtedly boost travel between the two nations.
“The exchange of cultural activities will increase interest among people in India and Korea. It will take some time but joint efforts of both the countries could attract tourists from Korea to travel to Kashmir,” Jeebok told the media on the sidelines of the G20 meeting at SKICC here.
The Korean delegate declined to comment on Chain’s decision to skip the G20 summit, stating that different countries have different opinions on certain subjects.
In response to a question about whether he recommends film stars from Korea to shoot in Kashmir, Jeebok said it is not easy to bring Korean pop-stars or movie stars to India as they have their own agendas.
Heaping praises on beauty and hospitality of Kashmir, the Korean delegate said he was so excited to be in Kashmir to attend the 3rd working meeting of tourism track delegates under India’s G20 presidency.
“It was so good so far, and so exciting, it was an awesome and fantastic experience, dancing here is kind of a dream come true, I had never imagined doing so. The 3rd working group meeting is being held in Srinagar, then the final stage is set in Goa and hopefully the member states will come up for a consensus. As far as the Korean delegation is concerned, we are very supportive of the G20 presidency of India for its great success,” he said, adding the Shikara ride was so beautiful and a serene experience.
Aziz Kilatwala, another G20 representative from Bahrain, representing the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), said the foreign delegates have a key role to play in promoting Kashmir as top travel destinations, so that tourists from other parts of the world are tempted to visit Kashmir.
Talking to the reporters on the sidelines of the 3rd G20 working group meeting at SKICC here, the Bahrain delegate said Kashmir is one of the few places on earth that gives people the feeling of being in heaven.
“I genuinely believe that I and other international delegates have a big job to do once we return. Kashmir itself has done a tremendous job of marketing in this direction. Now it’s our responsibility to take an extra step and make sure that we promote Kashmir as top travel destinations of the world,” he said.
The Bahraini representative responded that he arrived in Kashmir via New Delhi, when questioned whether he flew directly from Manama. He said Kashmir has so much natural beauty and that he is happy to be here as part of the G20 delegation.
Kilatwala said there is definitely potential for aspiring filmmakers of Saudi Arabia and GCC as a whole to explore Kashmir and rest of India for locations where they get the true essence.
“I will tell people, that whosoever wants to experience true natural beauty and its most pure form, Kashmir is one of the few places on the planet where they can get that type of experience. I will tell them about the people as to how welcoming and hospitable they have been, I will surely convey,” he added.
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