TAXILA: Minister of State for Tourism, Wasi Shah has said that the ‘Culture Caravan’ was arranged to explore the rich history of the region and engage with experts to provide insight into the significance of Gandhara heritage.
Pakistan is rich with religious and cultural tourism, and safe for international tourists, he said while addressing a Cultural Caravan on World Tourism Day 2023 at Taxila, organized here by Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) in collaboration with its partners.
State Minister for Tourism Wasi Shah, who is also Chairman of PTDC said, World Tourism Day is celebrated every year on September 27 under the auspices of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) to create awareness of and importance of tourism in the international community.
He said the Day would promote tourism and the social and cultural values besides its effects on political and economic aspects should be kept in mind as well. Visiting Taxila Museum and Julian, he said the place we are standing today is the 22-hundred-year-old Taxila University, which is considered one of the first universities in the region and the oldest in the world.
He said, ”I have decided to celebrate World Tourism Day at this place this year so that our friends in the country and abroad should get the message that civilization that Pakistanis are inheritors has been the beacon of knowledge since 2200 years ago.”
The other purpose of celebrating World Tourism Day in Taxila was to convey the message that Pakistan is also the inheritor of Harappa civilization about 5,000 years old and Mehrgarh about 5,000 years old. Wasi Shah lauded the role of PTDC and all stakeholders for organizing a successful culture caravan.
Addressing the cultural caravan, Managing Director PTDC Aftab Rehman Rana thanked all the guests, Regional Director Small Industries Khurram Dar, Zaildar Ahsan Shah, President Reimaging Gandhara and especially the sponsor President Alan Research Centre Owais Ali.
The event was attended by Minister of State for Tourism Wasi Shah, Balochistan Minister for Education and Tourism Dr Qadir Bakhsh Baloch, Ambassadors of different countries, diplomats, media persons, stakeholders of the tourism industry and various scholars. Besides the Taxila Museum, the delegation was also given a tour of the archaeological sites there, the 2200-year-old University Taxila, Julian and the Gandhara Art and Craft Village Taxila.