"Based on the feedback we have received from the tourists through various media, we have decided to showcase the adventure tourism potential of the valley during the festival," state Tourism Minister G A Mir said on Thursday.

Mir said the Summer Festival will begin from June 21, adding the tourism department was making efforts to make Kashmir a round-the-year destination for tourists.

"Our traditional tourist season was limited to two or three months and just a few places. Now we are making efforts to attract tourists round the year and also widen the network of new tourist destinations," he added.

On the tourist inflow to Kashmir valley, the minister said, it has been better than previous years during the months of April and May in spite of apprehensions that the just- concluded Lok Sabha polls might have negative effect.

"The tourism season in the months of April and May has been better than previous years. We have apprehensions that (just-concluded) Lok Sabha elections might affect the season this year," Mir told reporters here.
    
He said the good tourism season was possible due to the cooperation of the people and the stakeholders.  On the issue of sky-rocketing air fares to and fro Srinagar, Mir said airlines were not only responsible for it.

"Some travel agents and tour operators book the tickets for peak season in advance and then start profiteering at the peak season. We all have to see that we do not do anything that has the potential to harm the tourism, which is the backbone of Kashmir economy," he said.

(Agencies)

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