Restore pre-independence Railway platform as tourist attraction: Tassaduq Mufti
JAMMU, MARCH 20: Minister for Tourism, Tassaduq Hussain Mufti today stressed for early restoration of pre-independence railway platform at Suchetgarh Border to be developed as ‘Frontier Express theme cum Museum and Gallery’. He also called for formulating a comprehensive waste management plan for the destination to avoid inconveniences faced by the tourists visiting the area. The Minister said this during his extensive tour to the Suchetgarh Border to take stock of various development works being executed by different agencies to develop tourism infrastructure in the area. The Minister was apprised about the existing Tourist Reception Center and development of Multipurpose Hall with souvenir shops and cafeteria besides upcoming tourism infrastructure at Suchetgarh Border. Tassaduq Mufti stressed for commencing Beating Retreat Ceremony on the pattern of Wagah Border at Suchetgarh Border, besides taking innovative measures for better design, architect for vehicle parking, internal pathways and landscaping for tourist attraction besides improved public convenience. He also directed for preparing a detailed Power Point Presentation in 3D model indicating various aspects of the project and services to be made available, besides directing for completing the project in a stipulated time frame. Mufti expressed serious concern over need for proper waste management, besides removing heaps of garbage alongside the road and irrigation canal from Miran Sahib to Suchetgarh. He directed the concerned for formulating a comprehensive mechanism for waste management on scientific lines and directed Sub-Divisional Magistrate, R.S Pura to monitor the progress of work and submit a status report in this regard. The Minister also visited Art training and Agro Products Unit Nai Basti established by Tourism Department in convergence with Rural Development. Seeking details regarding the Unit, the Minister was apprised that the ‘Art and Agro Production Unit’ was established under Rural Tourism Scheme to explore the possibilities for its utilization for tourism purposes. He was informed that that the building has been handed over to the Panchayat and is presently being used by Local Community for marriages and other social events. Later, the Minister visited Suchetgarh and Gharana wetlands and took detailed information from concerned officers regarding the footfall of tourist besides taking stock of the available infrastructure. Officials of the Wildlife Department apprised the Minister about the avian species visiting the wetland during winter. The Minister was also informed about the plan to increase the wetland area after acquiring land, following the decision of the High Court. A delegation of locals apprised the Minister that the migratory birds destroy their crops, besides apprising him on their various grievances and issues. The Minister gave a patient hearing to the delegation and directed the concerned for formulating long term and short-term rehabilitation of the local population, besides providing relief to the affected. Mufti directed the officers to synergize their efforts so that the requisite results are achieved within the stipulated timeframe and also get necessary feedback about the status of work and implementation of various initiatives on the ground. The Minister sought coordination and cooperation among departments so that target achieving mechanism can be initiated. He also stressed upon concerned officials to work in synergy and enthusiasm to achieve tangible results on ground to develop Suchetgarh Boarder as a thriving tourist destination. He also directed that the staff service conditions should be improved so that they could serve in a more professional and productive manner. Director Tourism Jammu Smita Sethi, Deputy Director Tourism Jammu, Assistant Director Tourism Jammu (M&W) and various other officials of the concerned departments accompanied the Minister.