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Fresh snowfall brings cheer to tourists, mega-festival coming up: Tourism Dept

Jan-Feb records 45,102 tourist footfall

Jahangir Sofi

(Asian News Hub) – Much to the blessings for the tourism Industry, famous tourist destinations Gulmarg and Sonmarg witnessed a fresh snowfall adding joy to the tourists during their stay in the valley.

According to the MET department, world-famous ski destination Gulmarg recorded around 1.5 ft of snow while Sonmarg which was opened for tourists for the first time in the month of February this year recorded around 2ft snow.

Soon after the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) directed the states and UTs to open up for tourism in June 2020 following the Covid-19 pandemic, the tourism department in Kashmir has been on toes to host tourists in the valley.

As per the official figures available with news agency—KNO, from January 2020 to December 2020, as many as 41,267 tourists visited the valley.

In the month of December alone, the valley received 13,237 tourists and witnessed a massive celebration of Christmas and the New Year.

In the month of January this year, 19,102 tourists were reported to have visited the valley, while February witnessed 26,000 tourist footfall.

An official of the Tourism Department told KNO that fresh snowfall is nature’s gift, though the promotions, events and programs for the winter session are already over.

“The department is preparing for upcoming spring events which include a two-day mega festival on the opening of Tulip Garden, and day-long fest at Badamwari in Srinagar,” an official said.

“The fresh snowfall has surely extended the winter tourism at few hill stations in the valley, those who missed enjoying the white blanket, can still come to have a glimpse of both dry plains and white powdered mountains,” he said.  

Notably, world-famous ski destination Gulmarg also hosted the winter national games ‘Khelo India’ in which around 1200 athletes from different parts of India participated.

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In absence of family, Muslim neighbours perform last rites of elderly Pandit in Pulwama

(Asian News Hub) – The Muslim neighbours in Tahab locality of South Kashmir’s Pulwama district performed the last rites of an elderly Kashmiri Pandit on Saturday.

According to the news agency—KNO, Pandit Makhan Lal (70) breathed his last at his home in Tahab on Friday late night, plunging the whole locality in mourning.

Soon after the news of his death spread, the local Muslims made special arrangements to perform his last rites. They also ferried firewood to cremate the deceased.

“It is in our Islam to take care of our neighbours irrespective of their religion,” Zubair, a local resident said.

He said that his family members were in Jammu and it is their duty to perform his last rites.

Makhan Lal was a retired employee in BSNL and died after brief illness. He is survived by three daughters and two sons.

Notably, Makhan Lal was the maternal uncle of chief medical officer Pulwama, Dr Ramesh Mall.

Pandit families who are residing in Tahab locality did not migrate from Kashmir valley during the early 1990’s and instead decided to stay put. Since then the two communities have lived in the locality in harmony and have always shown compassion to each other.


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CRPF man among six die of Covid-19 in Kashmir, toll 2,678 in J&K

(Asian News Hub) – At least six persons including a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), who were tested positive for COVID-19, died on Saturday evening in Kashmir, taking the toll of deaths to 2,678 in Jammu and Kashmir.

An official told that six patients who died include 50-year-old CRPF man of 96 BN posted in Anantnag, 45-year-old man from Rajbagh, 58-year-old woman from Harwan, 55-year-old man from Chadoora, 50-year-old man from Iddgha and 85-year-old woman from Chadoora.

He said that three deaths were reported at Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS) Soura while one death was reported at SMHS Hospital Srinagar.

He further added that one each death was reported at JVC Bemina and CD Hospital Dalgate.

With six fresh fatalities, the death toll related to Covid-19 in Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir mounted to 2,678.


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CRPF man dies of Covid-19 at SKIMS Soura

(Asian News Hub) – A Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) man, who was tested positive for COVID-19, died on Saturday at SK Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS) Srinagar.

An official told that a CRPF man identified as Abhimaniya Sahu of 96 BN CRPF posted at Mattan area of South Kashmir’s Anantnag district died at SKIMS Soura days after testing positive for COVID-19.

He said that the CRPF man was admitted in the hospital on Saturday morning where as, breathed his last this evening.


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