Chairman of the Prime Minister Task Force on Gandhara Tourism Dr Ramesh Kumar Vankwani has said that concrete measures were underway to propel Gandhara tourism to six billion dollars within the next three years. “Efforts to promote Gandhara tourism will soon bear the fruits, as a result of which Pakistan will benefit one and half billion dollars in the first year, three billion in the second year and six billion dollars in the third year,” he said while talking. Pakistan offered the world a valuable window to Gandhara civilisation with its unique blend of ancient history, and the Buddha’s message of peace and compassion. The chairman said that unfortunately Pakistan was not included in the United Nations Buddhist tourist circuit, on the contrary, 70% of Buddhist sites were situated in Pakistan. Countries mentioned in the Buddhist tourism sites circuit encompassed merely 30% of the Buddhist civilization, therefore, efforts were being afoot to highlight Buddhist sites in Pakistan at international fora. During the short span of time, since he joined the force as chairman he said different visits to Buddhist sites were arranged at Shah Allah Ditta, Sawat, and Takht Bhai in order to highlight the Buddhist sites in the country. “I have arranged a round table conference and symposium, which attracted numbers of monks from other countries who returned to their countries as ambassadors of Pakistan,” he added. Moreover, he said, the huge influx of foreign tourists would not only help to generate economic activity in the country but also help eliminate terrorism from the country. He said that the promotion of Gandhara tourism was expected to foster stronger government-to-government, people-to-people, and business-to-business connections. At the end, the chairman said that the task force had a great surprise regarding Gandhara Civilization and tourism which would be soon unveiled. The event gathered monks and interfaith experts from Sri Lanka, Nepal, Thailand, China, Malaysia, South Korea and Vietnam with an objective to explore Pakistan’s rich Buddhist legacy and create an enabling environment for Gandhara tourism. Gandhara civilisation, which thrived in Pakistan centuries ago, could serve as an informative place for the visitors from across the globe to explore exquisite Buddhist sites. Chairman of the PM Task Force on Gandhara Tourism said the Gandhara civilisation continues to mesmerise from all over the world, emphasising the need to preserve and revive the historic Buddhist relics. He said cultural diplomacy helped foster understanding and tradition among civilisations, expressing confidence that the symposium would act as an effective platform in promoting Pakistan’s heritage. He urged collaborative efforts to raise awareness about the inclusive and multicultural nature of Gandhara civilisation and help the society to absorb diversity of cultures. However lack of security structure, deficits in awareness and marketing, needed funds for preservation and restoration, unsupervised hotels, underdeveloped roads, tourist safety, and lack of modern tourism infrastructure are a few of the challenges. The artistic creativity of the Gandhara civilization is one of its most remarkable aspects. The rediscovered cities of this civilization showcase their well-structured and modern lives through paintings, sculptures, coins, pottery, and their association with Buddhism. Recently an event marked in Pakistan gathered by monks and interfaith experts from Sri Lanka, Nepal, Thailand, China, Malaysia, South Korea and Vietnam with an objective to explore Pakistan’s rich Buddhist legacy and create an enabling environment for Gandhara tourism. The symposium aimed to create awareness about Gandhara and foster an appreciation for Pakistan’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, both domestically and internationally. It also focused on exploring new initiatives to strengthen cultural diplomacy efforts and promote tourism, especially faith tourism.