‘Annual event best means to promote pilgrim tourism’
Minister of state for Tourism, education, culture and floriculture and Parks, Priya Sethi underlined the need for making grand Navratra festival as effective medium to promote pilgrim tourism in the state.
The Minister was speaking at a high level meeting convened to review the arrangements for annual Navratra Festival-2017 being held at holy town of Katra.
“Over the years Navratra festival has become a major national event through which we can take pilgrim tourism to new highs by showcasing numerous other historical religious places of the state,” she asserted.
She said that this year the department shall endeavour to give a wider publicity to event by holding pre event activities at Delhi and road shows in various states so as to attract tourists to the grand event in large numbers .
She also informed that a curtain raiser of the event shall be held at Jammu to increase participation in the festival .
The Minister stressed on making the series of events proposed to be held during the nine day festival as real attraction for the tourists. She stressed on engaging renowned local artists for cultural events which will feature folk dance, music and other art forms of the state.
It was informed that the Government is going to hold series of promotional activities during the annual event featuring cultural, religious, folk and competitive events.
The nine day festivities would start with inauguration of the festival on September 21 at 11 am at the Asia Chowk Katra followed by a grand Shobha yatra.
Various other events proposed during the festival days include presentation of Mata Rani ki Kahani, Ram Leela, Prabhat Pehris, folk festival, Bhaint Competition, wrestling competition and various other cultural programmes.
The meeting was informed that this year the Department of Tourism has envisaged a special package of Sampoorna Manokamna Yatra facilitating visits to nine deities as per the traditional practice related to the Shri Mata Vaishno Devi pilgrimage.
The Minister asked JKTDC to chalk out attractive packages for the tourists and pilgrims during Navratra festival.
Minister also directed the concerned CEO’s of the tourism development authorities to ensure participation from the respective areas in the Jhankies for promotion of the local culture and art forms .
She said that the Navratra festival is an apt platform to highlight the culture and heritage of the state and should be optimally used to attract tourists.
The meeting was attended by Director Tourism Jammu, Smita Sethi, General Manager JKTDC, Anju Gupta, Deputy Directors besides other concerned officers.