Kashmir Life (KL): What is the procedure of getting into hotel management?
Rameez Wani (RW): After passing class 12th, one has to appear in All India CET test, and then authorities select candidates on merit basis for prescribed colleges. But Kashmir is an exception; anyone from any field can be employed in this sector.
KL: What is the scope of hotel management in Kashmir?
RW: There is no scope for a person who holds a professional degree in hotel management in Kashmir. At most you will get Rs 8 thousand a month, that too when you give in more than 12 hours shift.
KL: What do you think our hospitality sector lacks?
RW: We lack professional attitude. People are not ready to employ professionals; rather they bring guys from villages and small towns and pay them meagre salaries. This is not how you can leave a lasting impression on visitors’ mind. Even big 5 star hotels like Taj Vivanta don’t have any professionals. That is why they hardly have any 5 star facility available there.
KL: How was your experience of working in Kashmir?
RW: I haven’t worked but interned with Vivanta by Taj and Centaur Lakeview Hotel. Recently I joined Dunkin’ Donuts after I worked with Dominoz Pizza at its Raipur based outlet as Restaurant Manager for two years.
KL: Please share your experience at Dominoz?
RW: Dominoz Pizza is a 24X7 running service company and Kashmir is an unpredictable place where even strikes can last for months. And moreover Dominoz Pizza provides a good package and if employees prove good, they get promotions after every six months. In Kashmir, employees get promotions nearly after three or four years.
KL: Tourists often carry a bad impression at the end of their visit to Kashmir?
RW: It is because of lack of professionalism and professionals involved with the sector that tourists feel cheated. Product of Rs 100 is sold to them at Rs 1000. We don’t even know how to be courteous.
KL: How can we improve the hotel management sector here?
RW: There is an urgency of grooming the individuals, hiring professionals, and moreover we have to stop cheating tourists by showing them nothing on the quality food, good accommodation and so on.