Adnan Sami’s concert will showcase the lively side of Kashmir: Kiren Rijiju | india-news | Hindustan Times
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Adnan Sami’s concert will showcase the lively side of Kashmir: Kiren Rijiju

MoS home Kiren Rijiju said the government would provide a ‘peaceful environment’ for the concernt, which will be held on October 7 on the banks of Dal Lake at Sher-i-Kashmir International Convention Centre.

india Updated: Oct 05, 2017 11:44 IST
Azaan Javaid
Junior home minister Kiren Rijiju.
Junior home minister Kiren Rijiju. (AP File Photo)

Union minister of state for home affairs Kiren Rijiju will travel to Srinagar this week for a concert by singer-composer Adnan Sami, which is being organised jointly by his ministry and the Jammu and Kashmir government to promote tourism and Kashmiri culture in the valley that has witnessed a rise in violence since last year.

“People everywhere can witness the beauty, culture and music of Kashmir. The concert will show the lively side of Kashmir,” Rijiju said on Wednesday.

The state government will provide logistical support to the event to be held on October 7 on the banks of picturesque Dal Lake at the Sher-i-Kashmir International Convention Centre. The minister added that the Centre will fund the expenditure incurred on the concert.

Trained in Indian and western classical music and known for creating magic with the piano, Sami is known for non-film hit songs like Kabhi To Nazar Milao, Bheegi Bheegi Raaton Mein and Tera Chehra.

The singer, who was born in London to a Pakistani diplomat father and mother from Jammu and Kashmir, has also won accolades for his Bollywood numbers in movies like Ajnabee, Saathiya, Lucky: No Time for Love and Bajrangi Bhaijaan.

The concert is being held four days after a suicide attack on a Border Security Force camp in Srinagar’s Humhama area. One security force official and three militants, believed to be from the Jaish-e-Mohammad, were killed in the attack on Tuesday.

When asked to comment on the security concerns related to the concert, the minister said, “Discussions on the security situation in the valley are ongoing.We are working to provide a peaceful environment for the concern.”

Businesses in the valley, particularly tourism-related activities, have seen a slump since last year when the state was rocked by street violence following the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani.

The number of tourists visiting the valley has seen a sharp dip this year.

The tourism sector, which is a significant contributor to Jammu and Kashmir’s economy, adds 8% to the state’s gross domestic product. The sector employs over 100,000 people, directly and indirectly, according to approximate industry estimates.

Tourism figures for the valley have had a direct link with its law and order situation.

Kashmir was a favourite among national and international tourists until 1988, with over 700,000 arrivals. But in 1989, an armed violence began in the valley and the numbers dropped by 200,000.

There has been a decline in insurgency-related violence in recent years in the valley but the rise in street violence, mostly stone-pelting, has again scared away tourists.

Last week, a musical concert by Kashmiri singer Abha Hanjura — ‘Saaz-e-Kashmir’ — received a good response. Sami’s show will be the first major musical event since 2013 when renowned conductor Zubin Mehta performed in the famous Shalimar Gardens of Srinagar.

The event, Ehsas-e-Kashmir, was organised by the then German ambassador to India Michael Steiner in an effort to reach “the hearts of the Kashmiris with a message of hope and encouragement”.

In response to Mehta’s event, a civil rights groups organised another event Haqeeqat-e-Kashmir (the reality of Kashmir).