Batalik, which witnessed intense battle between Pakistani intruders and Indian army during 1999 Kargil war, was opened to tourists on Thursday with a three-day tourists Mela (fair) taking off in Dard Tribal area of Darchaks.

The fair aimed at attracting tourists to Batalik, 220 kms from Srinagar, has been organised by the State Tourism department.

Inaugurating the fair, Chief Executive of Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC), Kargil, Kachoo Ahmad Ali said opening of Batalik, located at a height of about 2000 feet, to tourists would provide employment opportunities to the youths.

Ghulam Hassan Khan, Lok Sabha member from Ladakh, in his address impressed upon the local people to convert their houses into Guest houses to earn from tourism.

He announced allotting Rs. 2.50 lakh from his MPLAD fund for preserving heritage spots of the area.