Home > Uncategorized > Future of Tourism in Gilgit-Baltistan?

Future of Tourism in Gilgit-Baltistan?


Skardu

Tourism had emerged as an important and lucrative business sector in the economy of Gilgit-Baltistan. Everybody had benefited either directly or indirectly.  Farmers were able to sell their fruit at competitive prices, cooks, porters drivers, tourist-guides, and people in the local transport all of them greatly enhanced their incomes. Enterprenuers took risk to set up businesses  and opened handicraft shops, and borrowed many hundreds of thousands of rupees from banks? Given the current security situation in Swat and elsewhere, what are the chances for any improvement in the international tourism market remains a glaring question for the people of GB.

Despite some efforts by the Government to improve Pakistan’s image and perception abroad, it remains in tatters. Nobody around the globe is prepared to accept Pakistan as a peaceful and a responsible country, despite the fact that most of its inhabitants are some of the most peace-loving and hospitable people on earth. More so in the case of Gilgit-Baltistan where every single tourist is treated with great care and friendship. There have been really a very very few incidents when any foreign tourists was harmed. Yes, K-2, Nanga Parbat and other mighty mountains do kill interpid climbers but the people living in valleys beneath those mountins are as peaceful as they ever were. Yes there have been espisodes of sectarian violence but that has remained generally harmless to our international guests. We in GB should be proud of the fact that we don’t have bomb explosions like those that took place in tourist places like Sharm El-Sheikh in Egypt in 2005, and for that matter regular abductions of tourits in Indian side of Kashmir and Bombay. The great people of GB have shown their civilisation by being kind to whoever comes to our land to enjoy the natural beauty and appalud our culture. We have welcomed good people and we will continue to appreciate whoever comes to our and with good intentions.

While we in GB should expres our deep sympathies with poor and vulnerable poplulations that are now suffering in Swat, Buner, Waziristan and elsewhere in a battle for conflicting ideologies but why should we in Gilgit-Baltistan should suffer for nothing. Is it time now that we in Gilgit-Baltistan now seek to project our own unique heritage, identity and try to show  the realities on the ground in Ghizer, Ghanches, Skardu, and Chilas and Astore.

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