ON May 22, the entire world will see how normal and peaceful things are in Jammu and Kashmir when the third meeting of the G20 Tourism Working Group is held in the Valley for three days. After the state of Jammu and Kashmir was divided into two UTs in August 2019 and its special status was revoked, the G20 meeting in Srinagar will be the region’s first major international event.
At the SCO Summit in Goa last week when the petulant and childish Bilawal Bhutto Zardari again raised Kashmir like a broken record, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar was savage and direct in his response: “There is only one issue to discuss on Kashmir, which is when does Pakistan vacate its illegal occupation of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir,” he said and added, “[On] Article 370, I have a phrase, which is ‘wake up and smell the coffee’, 370 is history. The sooner people realise it, the better.”
The blabbering Bhutto made another faux pax when he told journalists at the end of the SCO questioning India hosting a G20 meeting in Srinagar and added ‘’at the time we will give such a response that it will be remembered.” Well, so far Pakistan is remembered, time and time again for being a haven for terrorists and encouraging them to act against India.
So when Bilawal says ‘’ it will be remembered’’ it can be viewed as nothing more than a call to violence. When the world took notice of this shocking statement, The Pakistani Ministry of Foreign Affairs went into overdrive and issued a statement clarifying the remarks, saying, “Any insinuation, associating Foreign Minister’s remarks with a threat of violence, is not only mischievous but highly irresponsible.”
Well, interpreting it any other way than a direct threat to violence would be ‘’highly irresponsible’’ While Pakistanis continue to burn down their country and their minister issues threats of violence, Srinagar is preparing to welcome over 100 non-ministerial participants from G20 countries.
The Sher-i-Kashmir International Conference Centre, which is located on the shores of Dal Lake, is the primary location for G20 meetings. The venue has got a worldclass makeover, which also involves updating the digital infrastructure and renovating the interior and exterior. A sizable event will be held the day before the event to highlight film tourism, which the UT Administration has been actively promoting.
Foreign delegates will be taken on a sightseeing tour of Baramulla, Dachigam National Park, and the ski resort of Gulmarg in addition to participating in the three-day conference deliberations in Srinagar.
The G20 meeting in Srinagar is sure to demolish the Pak myth of ‘’all is not well in Kashmir’’ and destroy the negativity once and for all. Srinagar will host nearly two million visitors to the Valley in 2022.
It is also one more chance for India to refute Pakistan’s fictitious claim that human rights have been violated in the Kashmir Valley. Every Indian is looking forward to this G20 Tourism Summit in Srinagar.
Over the past three years, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has asserted that scrapping Article 370 brought “development and peace” to the region. The ongoing initiatives reflect India’s vision for a ‘New Kashmir’ –a bold beautiful paradise on earth.
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