Jammu: Twenty years after Tiger Hills in Kargil became a household name in the entire nation, the hill might soon be opened for the general public as a tourist destination.
Apart from this, at least 16 other peaks in Kargil that saw action during the 1999 India-Pakistan war may soon be thrown open for domestic, as well as international tourists flocking to admire the beauty of the Ladakh region.
The decision to seek the Centre's permission to open these out-of-bound areas has been taken in a meeting of the State Administrative Council (SAC) headed by Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik.
At present, tourists need permission from the Ministry of Home Affairs to visit any inner line area in Ladakh. Likewise, a permit is required to visit tribal and out-of-bound areas in Ladakh.
The peaks that the government plans to throw open are mostly in Drass and Batalik sector of Kargil, where intense fighting took place between the Indian soldiers and the intruding Pakistan Army in 1999.
The base of Tiger Hill, which received high coverage during the war, will also be opened for tourists.
Trekking routes that the government plans to open include Kargil-Lalung-Shahshi Lake-Darchiks/Garkone Broq, Kargil-Hunderman Brok Ridge (LoC visit), Batalik Junction to Gargardo (apricot village), Drass-Sumda-Marpola (Tiger Hill Base), National Highway to Kaksar Village (LoC visit), National Highway to Lato Village (LoC visit) and National Highway to Budgam-Majdass Village (LoC visit).
Other trekking routes would be Faroona-Jasgund via Lasar La, Akshow (Zanskar)-Gulab Garh (Kishtwar), Padum-Gulab Garh (Kishtwar) via Omasila, Padum-Dangale (Padder Valley) via Pot La, Kanore-Batambis-Sapi, Sapi to Rangdum via Rusila and Wakha La, Rangdum-Heniskote via Kanjila, Rangdum-Padum via Pangong La and Padum-Ralakung and Padum-Lamayuru.
By Arjun Sharma