Srinagar: Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi accompanied by strong business delegation arrived in Kashmir on a two-day visit on Thursday.

In what is a first since independence, the Who's Who of India Inc, including Tata Group chairperson Ratan Tata and Aditya Birla Group's Kumar Mangalam Birla, arrived here to interact with university students along with Gandhi.

Besides Tata and Birla, Bajaj Auto Managing Director Rajiv Bajaj, Wipro Group chief Azim Premji and HDFC's Deepak Parekh will be amongst those interacting with students at Kashmir University on Friday.

Gandhi had promised to allay the fears of the big business houses so that they invest in Kashmir to generate job opportunities for thousands of unemployed, educated youth here.

On Thursday, Gandhi visited councillors in Leh and is slated to address a public meeting followed by another in Kargil district.

In the afternoon, he will attend the foundation stone laying ceremony of Z-Morh Tunnel in Sonamarg district. He is also meet members of the National Students Union of India and the Indian Youth Congress.

On Friday, he will also meet panchayat members at the Sher-i-Kashmir International Conference Centre here.

This is the first time since 1947 that such a delegation of business leaders would be in Kashmir in a group. Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi will also be present during the Congress general secretary's meeting at Kashmir University here on Friday.

When Gandhi, 42, takes the delegation to the university, he would be fulfilling an important promise he made to students during his last visit in September 2011.

"I too am a Kashmiri. Your pain and suffering is my pain and suffering as well," Gandhi had told the students during his last visit, and promised them to persuade big business houses to invest in Kashmir.


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