To further promote the golfing circuit in Jammu & Kashmir; a golf tournament was organized here today at Lidder Valley Golf Course which saw the participation of around 84 golfers from across the country including eight envoys, besides local golfers.
The golf tournament was organized by PHD Chamber of Commerce & Industry, New Delhi in collaboration with the Department of Tourism, Union Ministry of Tourism and other agencies.
Mr. G Kamala Vardhana Rao, Director General, Union Ministry of Tourism, who was the Chief Guest on the occasion, felicitated all the winners of the tournament.
Dr. Ashraf Shikhaliyev, Ambassador of the Republic of Azerbaijan; Mr. Ung Sean, Ambassador of Royal Embassy of Cambodia; Mr. Willy K. Bett, High Commissioner of Kenya; Mr. Moe Kyaw Aung, Ambassador of Myanmar; Mr. Fleming Duarte, Ambassador of the Republic of Paraguay; Mr. Ramon S. Bagatsing Jr., Ambassador of the Philippines; Mr. Pham Sanh Chau, Ambassador of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam; Secretary, Tourism & Culture, Sarmad Hafeez, Director, Tourism, Kashmir, Dr. G N Itoo; Mr.Rajan Sehgal, President, India Golf Tourism Association; Mr. Saurabh Sanyal, Secretary General, PHDCCI; and Dr. Jatinder Singh, Assistant Secretary General, PHDCCI were present on the occasion.
Yesterday, a Golf Tourism Conclave was held on the theme ‘Rejuvenating Tourism & Business through Golf’ at Pahalgam Club which brought together all the relevant stakeholders to discuss issues and opportunities for the promotion of Golf Tourism.
Delivering the Keynote Address, Mr. G Kamala Vardhana Rao said that Golf Tourism is one of the thrust areas of the Ministry of Tourism and the government is willing to extend necessary support to the states to further promote this niche segment. He emphasized the need to develop more golf destinations to meet the growing demand of the golfers.
Addressing the conclave, Secretary, Tourism & Culture, Mr. Sarmad Hafeez said it has been observed that golf-linked tourists possess a higher purchasing power and spend more than the regular visitors. High profile golf events should be organized to attract domestic and international tourists and golf enthusiasts from all over the world. He further said that Jammu and Kashmir has the strength to provide round the year tourism and with Golf becoming a growing sport worldwide, there are immense opportunities for the growth of Golf Tourism in Jammu & Kashmir. Our aim is to become the golfing capital of India, he added.
The Ambassadors and High Commissioners from Azerbaijan, Cambodia, Kenya, Myanmar, Paraguay, Philippines and Vietnam praised the scenic beauty, picturesque landscape and golf courses of Jammu and Kashmir which they said, is more beautiful as compared to what they have even in their own countries.
It may be recalled here, that the Golfing circuit of Jammu & Kashmir comprising the iconic Royal Springs Golf Course, Pahalgam Golf Course, historic courses like the Gulmarg Golf Course and Kashmir Golf Course besides Jammu-Tawi Golf Course provides a rich and varied world class experience to visiting golfers which is unparalleled in rest of the country. Recently the prestigious PGTI-Pro tournament was held at the picturesque Royal Springs Golf Course, Srinagar which saw the participation of around 126 top golfers of the country and abroad including Jyoti Randhawa, Jeev Milkha Singh, Udayam Mane and others of the same order.