Joint Secy MHA reviews progress and requests Transaction Advisor report
Exercise to be completed by the middle of next year
JAMMU, 11 November: Pahalgam Club, Ashoka Hotel in Jammu and huts of Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Development Corporation (JKTDC) in Patnitop are among 12 Union Territory assets that have been identified for outsourcing and the whole exercise will be completed by the middle of the next year while other properties of this type will be identified in phase II.
This information was provided by the Department of Tourism to Union Home Ministry Joint Secretary Ashutosh Agnihotri who chaired a meeting at Jammu Golf Course yesterday to review the progress of the decision on the outsourcing of tourism assets in the territory of the Union.
The meeting was attended by Director of Tourism Jammu, Director of Tourism Kashmir, Managing Director of Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Development Corporation and CEOs of Pahalgam Development Authority, Gulmarg Development Authority and Patnitop Development Authority.
Official sources told EXCELSIOR that the Joint Secretary of the Union has been informed that a total of 12 assets – 9 in Jammu and 3 in Kashmir have been identified for outsourcing as per the decision taken by the government of union territory last year. The three assets in Kashmir are the Pahalgam Club run by JKTDC, a hotel in Gulmarg run by Gulmarg Development Authority and Sher-e-Kashmir International Convention Center (SKICC). Similarly, among the 9 active in Jammu are huts of JKTDC in Patnitop and Kud and Ashoka Hotel in Jammu.
The Joint Secretary was further informed that, as suggested by the Transaction Advisor, a decision has been made to invite a single bid for all of these 12 assets. However, the joint secretary conveyed a different opinion to the officers and therefore requested the transaction adviser’s report, sources said, adding that “the joint secretary is of the opinion that there may be little response to a single tender for all of these assets and that different floating bids would be the most viable option, however the exact decision will be made after review of the Transaction Advisor’s report”.
The Tourism Department officers have informed the MHA Joint Secretary that the Union Territory Government of Jammu and Kashmir is planning to complete the outsourcing exercise of these assets by the middle of the month. next year and that steps will then be taken to identify other such properties.
According to the sources, majority of the assets of the Department of Tourism and the Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Development Corporation are not generating the desired revenue due to various reasons.
“The current revenue generated by the assets of these organizations is not sufficient even for their routine maintenance and complaints about the poor facilities of these assets usually come in from tourists every time they use these facilities,” they said, adding “furthermore, neither the Department of Tourism nor the Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Development Corporation have enough manpower for the proper upkeep and maintenance of their assets, thus their condition is deteriorating d ‘year to year’.
Keeping these aspects in mind, the government decided last year to outsource the majority of the assets so that sufficient revenue can be generated and the properties are well maintained. Thus, instructions have been issued to identify assets that can be outsourced immediately.
In addition, a government decree dated December 9, 2021 constituted a committee consisting of two additional general secretaries and administrative secretaries from four departments to decide on the mechanism for outsourcing the assets of the tourism department.
The mandate of the committee is to select the properties to be subcontracted from the identified list, to identify the model for each property or group of assets to be subcontracted, to set and approve the minimum amount of the tender for each property to be outsourced, set and approve the time period for the outsourcing of the selected properties, approve the CPR/tender document to be prepared by the consultancy firm for the outsourcing and deliberate and decide on any other matter related to the outsourcing of properties.
“Outsourcing the assets will go a long way towards maintaining them as well as generating revenue as the government does not have sufficient resources for this task,” sources said, adding that “such an attempt has also been made in.