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COVID 2.0 | Tulip Garden experiences steep decline, daily visitors hover around 2000

(Asian News Hub) – With the recent spike in Covid-19 Positive cases in Kashmir, the highly promoted Tulip Garden is seeing a sharp drop in visitors, with only about 2000 people visiting the garden in a day, said an official.

A top official from the Floriculture department said that after the garden was thrown open for the public on 25 March this year, the number of visitors was increasing and this year department had planted around 1.5 million Tulip bulbs, but the recent spurt in Covid-19 positive cases is playing a spoilsport.

Hoteliers associated with the Tourism Industry said the majority of the hotels were sold out till May end, “but the recent spurt in the Covid-19 Positive and imposition of Covid-19 lockdown in different parts of the Country, the footfall of tourists in the valley witnessed a steep decline.”

“Many tourists have cancelled their bookings due to the prevailing Covid-19 situation,” they said.

Notably the beauty of the Tulip Garden was showcased in different programs and events by the Directorate of Tourism Kashmir in different parts of the country, which eventually became a success in attracting the Tourists towards the valley. 

Officials in the Floriculture department said that after the garden was thrown open for the visitors on 25 March this year, more than 2.20 lakh visitors visited the garden so far which was expected to increase.

“With Summers ahead, we were expecting the increase in the number of visitors, but due to the spurt in the Covid-19 positive cases, the footfall has gone considerably down, around two thousand visitors visit the park these days, and from 15th April to 19th April, around 7165 visitors have visited the garden”, an official said.

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Active Al-Badr militant found dead in Soura, Sgr

(Asian News Hub) – Body of an active militant from Al-Badr outfit was found in Soura area of Srinagar on Saturday late evening, officials said.

They said police came to know about the body of an active militant of Al-Badr lying on a roadside near Soura area of Srinagar. A police official told that the body of the militant identified as Amir Ahmed Malik, 23, a C category A-Badr militant.  “Malik was active since November 2020. He hails from Hyder Gund, Zainapora area of Shopian,” the official said.

A police official said it seems that the militant was killed in a “group clash” even as further investigations are on.

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Lady dies, minor boy injured in Doda road accident

Anzer Ayoob

(Asian News Hub) – A lady died while a minor boy was injured after a vehicle they were travelling in met with an accident near Police Station Assar in Doda district on Sunday.

An official said that a swift vehicle bearing registration number JK02CC-8873 was on its way from Jammu to Bhaderwah when it skidded off the road and rolled down from National Highway.l, leaving a lady dead on the spot and also left a minor boy wounded.

He said that the deceased lady identified as Babita Manhas, wife of late Krishan Manhas and injured minor identified as 11-yr-old Rehan Manhas are residents of Gandoh area of Doda district and presently residing at Jammu.

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4 including 2 civilians, 2 cops killed in Sopore militant attack

Police officer among 4 others injured; Injured civilian critical; Militants targeted police party enforcing Covid lockdown; Lashkar behind strike, have identified attackers, says DGP Dilbagh Singh

Peerzada Waseem

(Asian News Hub) – MilitantsSaturday attacked a police party at main chowk of Sopore in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district in which two policemen and two civilians were killed while a police officer among four others sustained bullet injuries.

Among two injured civilians, the condition of one is stated as critical. A police official told that militants targeted a police party at main chowk Sopore when they were enforcing carona curfew in the area. “The militants fired indiscriminately at the police party killing two policemen and two civilians. Two more cops and two civilians sustained injuries who are being treated in the hospital,” the officials said.

The injured, police official said, were first shifted to Sub-District Hospital Sopore wherefrom one policeman was shifted to SMHS hospital Srinagar for treatment. Hospitals sources at SDH Sopore told that two policeman and two civilians were brought to hospital in multiple bullet injuries after which they succumbed.

The slain policemen were identified as Constable Waseem Ahmed son of Muhamamd Saqiq Bhat of Narbal, Srinagar and constable Showkat Ahmed son of Abdul Gani, resident of Goripora, Beerwah Budgam. The dead civilians were identified as Bashir Ahmed Khan son of Ghulam Hassan of Mohalla Taliyan, Sopore and Showkat Ahmed Shalla son of Ghulam Qadir of Shalimar Colony Sopore.

Sources identified the injured Sub-Inspector as Mukesh Kumar and SPO Danish Ahmed. The injured civilian has been identified as Nayeem Ahmed Khan son of Muhammad Maqbool, a resident of Maharajpora, Sopore, who has been referred to SMHS hospital Srinagar where his condition is stated as critical. “He has received bullet injury in his thigh and abdomen,” hospital sources said. Police, however, said that four civilians sustained injuries of which two succumbed. The identity of second injured civilian couldn’t be ascertained.

A pall of gloom descended on Sopore, Srinagar and Beerwah localities when bodies of four—two cops and two civilians reached their respective homes. The bodies of two slain cops were first taken to District Police Lines (DPL) Srinagar where police paid rich tributes to them.

Director General of Police (J&K) Dilbagh Singh, who paid floral tributes to the slain cops at DPL Srinagar, said that Lashkar-e-Toiba militant outfit was behind the Sopore attack, in which two cops and two civilians were killed and three others were injured. Talking to the reporters on the sidelines of wrath laying ceremony of two cops here, Dilbag Singh, said that LeT outfit was involved in this attack and they have identified the attackers, however, further details will not be shared at the moment.

Singh said that to enforce Covid appropriate behaviour in view of the Covid-19 pandemic, a party from Sopore police station under the charge of sub-inspector Mukesh Kumar was deployed in the chowk when the attack took place.

He said that the firing was retaliated by the police party during which some personnel were injured and civilians who had set up their fruit and vegetables stalls nearby also got injured.

“Subsequently, two injured cops succumbed to their injuries, identified as constable Waseem and constable Showkat and sub-inspector Mukesh and SPO Danish got injured. Three civilians were also injured of whom two later succumbed while another one was referred to Srinagar hospital for treatment,” he said

He said they were looking into all the angles of the attack and forces have also launched a follow-up operation in the area and the perpetrators of the crime will be soon brought to justice.

Replying to a query, Singh said that militancy was declining and control of the forces in all the areas was very good while operations were also being carried out. “However, due to Covid-19 there has been a decline in anti-militancy operations but the forces still have an upper hand and we are launching operation in all the areas as well,” he said.

He said that under these circumstances these incidents happen and all those who are involved in these attacks will be not be spared at any cost.

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