Closing programme held for KailashMansarovarYatra 2018

Gangtok, 25 Aug (IPR): A closing programme to felicitate and thank all the line departments, stake holders and officials involved in the KailashMansarovarYatra 2018 via Nathula was organised by the Tourism & Civil Aviation Department and STDC.

The chief guest for the event was the Chief Secretary, Government of Sikkim, AK Shrivastava. Present in the gathering were Secretary, Tourism & Civil Aviation Department, CP Dhakal; Secretary, Energy & Power Department, KB Kunwar; DIG ITBP, KapilDwivedi; Chief Engineer (Swastik) BRO, Harendra Kumar.

In his address, the Chief Secretary expressed his joy at the milestones that Tourism Department has achieved and said that there was no dearth of work in the Tourism Sector. He also praised the Chief Minister for re-opening the Nathula trade route which led to the strengthening of the Indo-China relations thus making the KailashMansarovar Pilgrimage via Nathula, successful.

He also applauded the efforts of all the line departments involved, from Transport to Health to Energy and Power, IPR, ITBP, BSNL, NDRF, BRO and the 17th Mountain Division. He concluded his address by saying that the message that should go out to all the tourists should be “Come to Sikkim to Feel Sikkim; Don’t come to Sikkim to touch Sikkim.”

Earlier, Secretary Tourism gave a detailed account of the KailashMansarovarYatra via Nathula since its inception in 2015. He also spoke on the importance of culture and hospitality that Sikkim provided to the Yatris, stating that it was our tradition to host the pilgrims.

He said that the Chief Minister’s efforts into turning Sikkim into a Pilgrimage Tourism destination is the dream of all the people and that the department would leave no stone unturned in doing so. Compared to the other routes, from Nepal and Lipulekh, he stated that the route via Nathula was most preferred and has a success rate of 98%.

Khadas and mementos were handed out to all the line departments involved including the SikkimeseYatris who had completed the pilgrimage successfully in the previous years.