May 23, 2023
JAMMU – Oscar winning actor Ram Charan stole the show at the opening of the G20 Tourism Working Group meeting in Srinagar on Monday when, along with the Korean ambassador Chang Jae-bok, he presented an impromptu dance performance to the famous Naatu-Naatu beats during a side event on film tourism.
As many as 122 G20 delegates, accompanied by Tourism Minister G Kishan Reddy, were given a traditional welcome as they reached the Srinagar Airport from Delhi by a chartered flight. They were received by Joint Secretary G20 Bhavna Saxena and J&K’s ADGP Security, Divisional Commissioner, Secretary Tourism, Director Tourism and other officers. Kashmiri music was played at their arrival.
The proceedings started with the side event on Film Tourism for Economic Growth and Cultural Preservation which was attended by Union Minister G Kishen Reddy, Minister of State in the PMO, Dr Jitendra Singh, India’s G20 Sherpa, Amitabh Kant, G20 chief coordinator, Harsh Vardhan Shringla, Secretary I&B Ministry, Apurva Chandra and others.
Reddy heartily welcomed all dignitaries, international and national delegates, invitees and industry stalwarts. He described Srinagar as one of India’s oldest and the most beautiful city.
He said that the government’s aim is to revive film tourism not just in J&K but across India and also promote eco-tourism. He said India offers every kind of location to the filmmakers and the government is striving hard to make a comprehensive plan for tourism development, economic growth, and cultural preservation.
Reddy said that films have great potential to attract tourists from across the globe. He said that film-induced tourism helps in boosting many other sectors like hospitality, transportation, etc. He said that film tourism isn’t just showcasing beautiful locations but also ensures cultural preservation, promotion of talent, and boosting the economy of the region.
Dr. Jitendra Singh, Minister of State PMO, remarked about the many iconic films shot in the picturesque valley of Kashmir.
He said that the event is a moment of rejuvenation and reincarnation. He listed a number of films that have been shot in Kashmir before 1990 when terrorism broke out in J&K. He said that J&K provides a natural destination for filmmakers and is cost-effective as well. He said that J&K has contributed hugely to the India film industry in the past.
Superstar Ram Charan expressed “absolute pleasure” to be once again at Srinagar. Presenting his thoughts on India as a Film Tourism Destination he highlighted India’s allure as a premier Film Tourism Destination. From the majestic deserts of Rajasthan to the idyllic backwaters of Kerala and the captivating mysticism of Kashmir offers an array of breath-taking locations for global cinema.
Speaking on the occasion, India’s G20 Sherpa, Amitabh Kant said that Kashmir has a huge potential for film tourism. He said that 370 filmmakers have sought permission to shoot films in Kashmir, and the Government of India and the UT administration will go out of the way to facilitate the filmmakers.
The event witnessed an offside conversation between film actor Konidela Ram Charan, and film critic Mayank Sharma. During the conversation, the actor talked about his journey in the film industry and also about the success graph of his blockbuster film RRR. The actor said that he used to come to Kashmir since his childhood.
A Handicraft Exhibition held at the lawns of SKICC in Srinagar. The delegates evinced keen interest in the exhibits displayed at the Handicraft Exhibition.