The Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) has termed as unfortunate union home minister P Chidambaram linking the high number of tourist arrivals in the Valley to the return of peace.
"The KCCI is astonished at the statement made by Chidambaram during the 26th northern zonal council meeting at Chandigarh. It is unfortunate that the union home minister should have linked the increased inflow of tourists with peace in the state," the trade and industry body said in a statement.
The KCCI has in the past also raised objections to linkages and always hopes that the leaders of the country take all precaution while making such statements which "do more harm than good". "Therefore, the economic activity should not be linked to peace in a manner that Chidambaram has done," the statement added.
Chidambaram had on Friday said there has been no terror incidents in the country so far this year and even Jammu and Kashmir has remained peaceful.
"All of us should rejoice and pray that peace in Kashmir is durable," the home minister said, adding that "the country needs to be vigilant to foil terror threats".
In Jammu and Kashmir, he said, seven civilians and six security personnel were killed in 2012. "The figures are in single digits, while number was in hundreds four or five years ago," Chidambaram said.
Jammu and Kashmir has witnessed a boom in tourism sector as already nine lakh tourists have visited the state this year, he said. "Let me touch wood at the same time," Chidambaram said.