The picturesque Kashmir valley has bewitched Bollywood and other local filmmakers for generations. In fact, the valley remained a veritable paradise for the Indian film industry for a long time. The idyllic locale remained part of films of every possible genre, from romance to comedy, action to family socials. However, due to varied reasons, there was some cut off in between which now appears to be getting fixed.
Bollywood’s big banners have already arrived in Kashmir giving a major shot in the arm to the tourism sector which was facing huge losses.
The visiting Bollywood team comprised a 24 member Bollywood delegation including members of the Ajay Devgun Films, the Sanjay Dutt Productions, the Reliance Entertainment, the Rohit Shetty Films, the Zee Studios, the Adhikari Brothers and SAB (Marathi), the Endemol, Director Raj Kumar Hirani and the Excel Entertainment besides several representatives from the Producers Guild, Mumbai.
Tollywood film makers are equally enthusiastic to shoot in Kashmir and capture the breathtaking landscapes in their movies. Film makers Kannada superstar Puneeth Rajkumar shot for the film James in February 2021. South film actress Priyamani’s team also shot last month in remote areas of Doodhpathri with new entrants Kiara and Sonal.
The visit of bollywood members sends a message across the India about the beauty of the land and hospitality of its people. Organisers promoting the events like this can be powerful. In contemporary times, they could be ambassadors for the tourism industry, more particularly the adventure tourism. Such events could also be a remedy to some toxic propaganda campaign launched in the past by some television channels and media houses against J&K.
Kashmir has historically been an attraction for anyone who wants to relax, and enjoy. In the past, the stakeholders have not been able to promote the Kashmir Valley, its unique weather, mountain peaks, water bodies, vast fields and orchids, archeological sites, and cultural signposts. However, to at least see tourism back on rails in Jammu and Kashmir, both the local and central governments need to work in tandem and promote this part of the globe, known to be a paradise on the earth, as an all-season destination locally and internationally. There is hope that Bollywood and other filmmakers will portray Kashmir in the right perspective rather than the one which proves harmful and damaging to tourism and allied sectors of Jammu and Kashmir.