Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi has a new and a most unlikely admirer: Congress tourism minister of Kashmir Ghulam Ahmad Mir.
Calling for a replication of the Gujarat tourism formula in Kashmir at a meeting chaired by chief minister Omar Abdullah on Monday, Mir said, "Modi has brought the desert of Gujarat on the tourism map of India in a big way".
Modi, Mir said, had planned tourism development in such a way where he "dovetails investors coming to Gujarat with massive infrastructure development".
The state tourism advisory committee meeting was meant to take stock of the tourism scenario, which had remained upbeat despite apprehensions following the execution of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru.
The meet was also meant to chalk out a fresh tourism policy for the state.
The remarks - which came on a day Modi addressed US-based Gujaratis through a video conference, launching a scathing attack on the Centre and praising the development initiatives of his own government - would not please the Congress brass.
The party has maintained that Modi's claims of development are a bluff.
"We have taken development to new heights, taken it for the wellbeing of every person," Modi told the Gujrati diaspora.
"Weak leadership is responsible for the present situation in the country," he added.