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War zones Tiger Hill and Tololing on tourist map

A Decade after Tiger Hill and Tololing became synonymous with the Kargil war,plans to turn them into tourist destinations are making headway....

Written by Manu Pubby | Drass |
July 15, 2009 2:59:35 am

A Decade after Tiger Hill and Tololing became synonymous with the Kargil war,plans to turn them into tourist destinations are making headway. The Army,which had earlier expressed reservations about the state government’s plans to organise treks up the peaks,that saw bulk of the action in 1999,is now turning around.

The Army is even planning to train locals in hospitability and promote treks up the two peaks under its Sadbhavana project. “We are planning to develop a website under the Sadbhavana project to give tourists information about the area. We are also planning to run expert courses to train locals. Treks can be organised to Tololing and even Tiger Hill,” Brigadier I S Ghuman,who commands the Drass based 56 Infantry Brigade,said.

The J&K government has long talked about promoting Drass as a tourist destination. Former Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed even promised to take up the case with the Army but little was achieved as officials used the ‘security scare’ card to frustrate the state government’s plans.

But now the Army is confident that there would be no security concerns as the area is peaceful. No case of ceasefire violation or attempted intrusions has been reported in the region since the 2003 Indo-Pak ceasefire agreement.

“The situation in the region is perfectly peaceful and it is totally safe for tourists. If the civil administration takes initiative,treks can easily be organised,” a senior Army officer said. “The locals can benefit by hiring out ponies and acting as guides for tourists. We are also looking to train them in ‘bed and breakfast’ concept.”

Tiger Hill is free of army presence as the Army has taken up positions ahead of it along the Line of Control. Besides,the Army mans the posts only in summer as heavy snow blankets the area during winter.

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