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January 20, 2020

KP senior minister claims drastic steps for promotion of tourism

Peshawar

January 20, 2020

PESHAWAR: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Senior Minister Mohammad Atif Khan has said that construction work on the Arbab Niaz Cricket Stadium Peshawar would be completed by the end of this year at a cost of Rs1.40 billion.

Talking to The News, Senior Minister Atif Khan, who also holds the portfolio of Sports and Youth Affairs, said the Arbab Niaz Stadium would be one of the biggest cricket stadiums in the country in terms of capacity by accommodating about 35,000 spectators. The minister said that the cricket stadium would not play host to the Pakistan Super League cricket matches for lack of facilities.

Atif Khan said that security situation in Peshawar and other parts of the province had improved and the Pakistan Cricket Board should provide opportunity to the people to enjoy cricket matches in Peshawar. “Our government hosted the National Games in Peshawar last year. About 10,000 players from across the country participated in the mega event,” the senior minister said and added that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf government would hold under-21 games at tehsil level this year which would continue for six months and some 23,000 young players would participate in these games.

Atif Khan, who also holds the portfolio of Culture and Tourism, said that four tourism zones would be established in the province where all tourism related facilities and incentives would be given to the investors. “We have approved the establishment of tourism zones from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly to promote tourism in the province,” he said. The minister added that Chitral, Swat, Abbottabad and Mansehra districts had been identified for these tourism zones.

He said the tourism authority had been established in the province while special tourism police force would become functional this year. He said that tenders had been approved for the construction of roads to 14 newly identified tourism destinations in the scenic valleys and districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

To a question, the senior minister said that Prime Minister Imran Khan was taking keen interest in the promotion of tourism and the provision of sports facilities in the province.

Atif Khan said that the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government had approved about Rs28 billion for Sports and Youth, including Rs9 billion, for merged districts. He added that seven culture centres had been approved for different parts of the province in order to facilitate cultural activities at divisional level.