Bakshi Stadium draped in national tricolour for PM Modi's visit

The Bakshi Stadium here has been draped in national tricolour for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit on Thursday even as stringent security arrangements have been put in place to ensure the high profile event passes off peacefully.
Bakshi Stadium, Srinagar
Bakshi Stadium, Srinagar

Srinagar | The Bakshi Stadium here has been draped in national tricolour for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit on Thursday even as stringent security arrangements have been put in place to ensure the high profile event passes off peacefully.

Prime Minister Modi will participate in the 'Viksit Bharat Viksit Jammu Kashmir' programme at the Bakshi stadium on Thursday.

The officials said that tight security arrangements have been made for the visit of the prime minister, which will be his first to the valley since abrogation of Article 370 in 2019.

The security forces have been deployed in numbers all along the routes to be taken by Prime Minister Modi during his stay in Srinagar while barricades have been established at many places to prevent movement of the people during the VVIP visit, the officials said.

Drones and CCTV cameras are being used for surveillance while foot patrolling by the security forces has been intensified in a two kilometre radius around the venue.

Marine commandos have been deployed in river Jhelum and Dal Lake to prevent the use of these water bodies for any subversive activities, they said.

Several schools falling along the route to be taken by the prime minister have been closed for Wednesday and Thursday while board examinations scheduled to be held on Thursday have been postponed till next month.

Prime Minister Modi, during the visit, will dedicate to the nation Rs 5,000 crore programme - the 'Holistic Agriculture Development Programme' - for boosting agri-economy in Jammu and Kashmir, an official handout said here on Wednesday.

Modi will also dedicate to the nation and launch multiple projects worth over Rs 1,400 crore under Swadesh Darshan and PRASHAD (Pilgrimage Rejuvenation And Spiritual, Heritage Augmentation Drive) scheme, including the project for 'Integrated Development of Hazratbal Shrine', Srinagar.

He will also launch the 'Dekho Apna Desh People's Choice Tourist Destination Poll' and 'Chalo India Global Diaspora Campaign'. The prime minister will also announce tourist destinations selected under Challenge Based Destination Development (CBDD) Scheme.

Besides, Prime Minister Modi will distribute appointment orders to about 1,000 new government recruits of Jammu and Kashmir and will also interact with beneficiaries of various government schemes, including women achievers, lakhpati didis, farmers and entrepreneurs etc.

The 'Holistic Agriculture Development Programme' (HADP) programme is expected to equip about 2.5 lakh farmers with skill development via dedicated Daksh Kisan portal.

Under the programme, about 2,000 Kisan Khidmat Ghars will be established and robust value chains will be put in place for the welfare of the farming community, the official handout said.

The multiple initiatives under the Swadesh Darshan and PRASHAD schemes to be dedicated to the nation by Prime Minister Modi include development of 'Integrated Development of Hazratbal Shrine' in Srinagar, J&K; tourism facilities developed in Northeast circuit in Meghalaya; Spiritual Circuit in Bihar and Rajasthan; Rural and Tirthankar Circuit in Bihar; development of Jogulamba Devi Temple, Jogulamba Gadwal District, Telangana; and development of Amarkantak Temple, Annupur District, Madhya Pradesh.

Prime Minister Modi will also launch about 43 projects that will develop a wide range of pilgrimage and tourist sites across the country. These include important religious sites like the Annavaram Temple in Kakinada district of Andhra Pradesh; Navagraha Temples in Thanjavur and Mayiladuthurai District of Tamilnadu and Karaikal district of Puducherry; Sri Chamundeshwari Devi Temple, Mysore District, Karnataka; Karni Mata Mandir, Bikaner District Rajasthan; Maa Chintpurni Temple, Una District, Himachal Pradesh; Basilica of Bom Jesus Church, Goa, among others. The projects also include development of various other sites and experience centres like Mechuka Adventure Park in Arunachal Pradesh; Rural Tourism Cluster Experience at Gunji, Pithoragarh, Uttarakhand; Ecotourism zone at Ananthagiri forest, Ananathagiri, Telangana; Meghalayan Age Cave Experience and Waterfall Trails Experience at Sohra, Meghalaya; Reimagining Cinnamara Tea Estate, Jorhat, Assam; Ecotourism experience at Kanjli Wetland, Kapurthala, Punjab; Julley Leh Biodiversity Park, Leh, among others.

During the programme, Prime Minister Modi will announce 42 tourist destinations selected under Challenge Based Destination Development (CBDD) Scheme. The innovative scheme, announced during Union Budget 2023-24, aims to provide end-to-end tourist experiences by catalysing development of tourist destinations while also promoting sustainability and ushering competitiveness in the tourism sector.

The 42 destinations have been identified in four categories (16 in Culture & Heritage Destination; 11 in spiritual destinations; 10 in Ecotourism and Amrit Dharohar; and 5 in Vibrant Village).

Prime Minister Modi will launch the first ever nation-wide initiative to identify the pulse of the nation on tourism, in the form of 'Dekho Apna Desh People's Choice 2024'.

The aim of the nation-wide poll is to engage with citizens to identify most preferred tourist attractions and understand tourist perceptions across five tourism categories - Spiritual, Cultural & Heritage, Nature & Wildlife, Adventure, and other categories. Besides the four main categories, the 'other' category is where one can vote for their personal favourites and help uncover hidden tourism gems in the form of unexplored tourism attractions and destinations like Vibrant Border Villages, Wellness Tourism, Wedding Tourism etc.

The prime minister will launch the 'Chalo India Global Diaspora Campaign' with an aim to inspire the Indian diaspora to become Incredible India ambassadors and promote tourism to India.

The campaign is being launched based on the clarion call of the prime minister, wherein he requested the Indian diaspora members to encourage at least five non-Indian friends to travel to India.

With more than three crore overseas Indians, the diaspora can serve as a powerful catalyst for Indian tourism, acting as cultural ambassadors, the handout reads.

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