Kashmir’s Tulip Garden replica for Canadian festival

There is some good news for the Kashmir valley’s tourism sector at a time when it is on the revival path. A replica of the summer capital’s famed tourist spot Tulip Garden will be set up at the Canadian Tulip Festival in Ottawa next year. As the Canadian festival draws tourists from all over the world, the stakeholders say this will introduce the Valley’s Tulip Garden to the international tourist and would then help attract visitors from all over the world. “A replica of our Tulip Garden will be set…

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GST hits carpet business in Kashmir

Closed looms, lost jobs and scanty sales: the Kashmiri carpet industry is facing a crisis of sorts after the imposition of the Goods and Services Tax (GST). At stake is the future of the Kashmiri craft and, with hundreds of carpet weavers losing their jobs and a once-thriving trade being abandoned in the three months since the new tax regime. Several carpet sellers are now searching for greener pastures like Arshad Hussain, who had been associated with this trade in New Delhi since 1994. “It seems people have stopped buying…

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Locals feeling unsafe, how can we convince tourists?: Tourism Body

Already hit by nose-dive in tourist arrivals to Kashmir, people associated with the tourism industry now fear that the growing incidents of braid chopping and attacks on people suspected as braid choppers might “deepen the negative perception about the Valley among the prospective tourists.” On Friday, the heads of at least eight tourism organisations met Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti and urged her to “take steps” to stop braid chopping incidents, stating that the “constant fear in the air is set to cast a shadow on winter tourism in Kashmir.” A…

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Roll back GST on Kashmir Arts demands NC

National Conference Thursday expressed serious concern over the ‘continuous indifference of both state and central governments’ towards the plight of artisans, carpet workers, shawl embroidery workers, wood carvers and other skilled, semi skilled workers following the imposition of GST in J&K. The party demanded that the government initiates process of declaring handicrafts and other allied sectors GST exempted. Criticising the PDP BJP government over what he called ‘its inability and inaction to make handicrafts and allied sectors GST free’, NC Provincial Spokesperson Imran Nabi Dar, in a written statement, said,…

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Braid chopping incidents aimed to malign Kashmir’s image: Tourism Body

As authorities have failed to stop braid chopping incidents or caught the people involved in the act, tourism players here too have become apprehensive about the happenings terming it an attempt to ‘malign Kashmir’s image across world’. People involved in the tourism trade believe that the continuous incidents of braid chopping would further dent Kashmir’s tourism sector, which is already in doldrums post 2016 unrest. “It is a serious issue which has confronted not only our society but our economy as well,” said chairman, JK Hotelier Club, Mushtaq Chaya. “Government…

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Job Cuts, Cash Crunch, All because of GST: Kashmir’s Carpet Traders

Traders say Kashmir’s centuries-old handicraft and carpet industry is facing the biggest survival challenge these days after the Goods and Services Tax (GST) came Nazir Ahmad Dar’s livelihood is literally hanging by a thread. The carpet-weaver who lives on the outskirts of Srinagar is under distress after the national sales tax GST was implemented in Kashmir valley. He had to shut over 20 looms. Out of 100 weavers working with him, 85 have already lost their job. Reason: the 50-year-old loom owner has not got a single order for the…

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GST gets simpler for small businesses and exporters

The GST Council tweaked rules on Friday to make life simpler for small businesses and exporters and also cut rates on 27 products , including man-made yarn, which was a key demand of the textiles sector, in a bid to mollify those complaining about the new tax regime. While the main focus was on reducing the compliance burden for a majority of taxpayers+ who contribute a minuscule part of the revenue, the move to reduce the rate on man-made fibre was meant to comfort businessmen in states such as Gujarat, where…

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KCCI & JCCI to work in Unison stay away from politically sensitive issues

The Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) and its counterpart Jammu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI) have joined hands to work on issues confronting various business sectors and overall development of the state. In a joint press conference held at KCCI office in Srinagar on Friday, the presidents of both KCCI and JCCI put forth several demands, which both the chambers would be raising with the government but vowed to avoid raking up any conflicting issues. “With regard to policy matters and issues wherein there are divergent views,…

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Negative publicity hurting tourism in Kashmir: Travel Industry

Travel agents from several parts of the country and abroad feel that the situation in Kashmir was not being portrayed “correctly” and that negative publicity was hurting the tourism sector in the valley. A group of travel agents from several cities of the country and Thailand, on a familiarisation tour of Kashmir, visited prominent destinations such Gulmarg, Pahalgam and Sonamarg. “Before sending tourists to Kashmir, we wanted to visit ourselves and we found everything is good. I appreciate how people are so nice and friendly with the tourists. Tourists are…

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GST ‘Rollback’ attempt to confuse people: Industry

The Associated Chamber of Commerce and Industries, Kashmir, (CCIK) today termed the government claims of reducing the GST rates on handicraft items and bringing relief to small traders a “brazen attempt to pull a fast one and confuse the people of the state in general and the business community in particular”. This was stated by CCIK secretary general Mauzam Bakshi after a meeting of the chamber. “While analysing the press statement as well as the official notification, experts have found that no reduction in the tax rates of Kashmir handicrafts…

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