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Jammu and Kashmir: Tulip garden thrown open

NITN | @notintownlive | 26 Mar 2022, 12:20 am

Jammu and Kashmir: Tulip garden thrown open Tulip Garden Open

Srinagar: Asia's largest Tulip Garden, housing over one million tulips, was opened to the public on Wednesday.

The garden was swarmed by visitors who wanted to spend their time amid a riot of colours. Chief Secretary, Dr Arun Kumar Mehta, declared the garden open in presence of senior officers from the Floriculture department, Tourism department, J&K Bank and a large number of tourists, who had come from different parts of the country besides locals.

The opening of Tulip Garden overlooking the famous Dal Lake marks the beginning of the new tourism season in the Kashmir Valley.

The Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden, formerly known as Siraj Bagh, was opened in 2008 by then Chief Minister of erstwhile Jammu and Kashmir state Ghulam Nabi Azad.

The idea of the garden, spread over 30 hectares in the foothills of the snow-clad Zabarwan range, was conceived to advance the tourism season in the valley by two months.

This year the garden houses 1.5 million flowers of tulips, daffodils, hyacinths and Muscari.

According to Floriculture Department officials, this year there will be 68 varieties of tulips, "Visitors will be able to see six new varieties of tulips".

As per figures, last year 2.25 lakh people visited the garden.

This year, the department has made provisions for online ticket sales as well to avoid the rush at the ticket counter.

The average lifespan of Tulip flowers is three to four weeks, but heavy rains or too much heat can destroy them.

The Floriculture Department plants tulip bulbs in a phased manner so that the flowers remain in the garden for a month or more.

Locals, as well as tourists currently in Kashmir, on Wednesday thronged to get a glimpse of the tulips in the garden on the first day of its opening.

"I planned my trip during this time so that I could see the Tulip garden. It is my first time in Kashmir, having seen the Tulip garden on TV, I always wanted to visit. I am feeling lucky to be here," said Lalita, a tourist from Kerala.

Besides tourists, locals too turned up in good numbers to visit Tulip garden.

" It is always refreshing to visit Tulip garden, knowing that this garden remains open for a few days only, so I made sure to visit the garden on day one," said Jasmin Ahmad, a Srinagar resident.

Last year, over two lakh tourists visited the garden. The Traffic Department has reworked the routes to tackle the rush at the garden located on the banks of Dal lake.

“Tulip garden has helped us to advance the tourism season in Kashmir. Now many people come just to see this garden in the month of March,” said Nisar Ahmad, a tour operator. A series of musical and cultural events are planned in the garden.

The opening of Tulip Garden overlooking the famous Dal Lake marks the beginning of the new tourism season in the Kashmir Valley.

The garden was thrown open to the public by Chief secretary Arun Kumar Mehta on Wednesday. This year the garden houses 1.5 million flowers of tulips, daffodils, hyacinths and Muscari. According to Floriculture Department officials, this year there will be 68 varieties of tulips, "Visitors will be able to see six new varieties of tulips."

As per figures, last year 2.25 lakh people visited the garden.

This year, the department has made provisions for online ticket sales as well to avoid the rush at the ticket counter.

The Floriculture Department plants tulip bulbs in a phased manner so that the flowers remain in the garden for a month or more.

A series of musical and cultural events are planned in the garden.

Later, the Chief Secretary also inaugurated J&K Bank enabled e-ticketing facility for the visitors, becoming the first visitor to generate an E-ticket.

He said that queuing up for a long time was cumbersome for the visitors, so E-ticketing was introduced to make the visit of tourists hassle-free.

Commending J&K Bank for its people-friendly initiatives, Dr A K Mehta said the Bank is doing yeoman services and I compliment the management for coming up with an online portal well within the timeline as expected.

The E-booking provision has been made available on the website of the Floriculture Department from day one to enable the tourists and visitors to plan their visit comfortably online.

The Chief Secretary also directed the Floriculture Department to take feedback from the tourists for making their stay more comfortable.

Dr Mehta appealed to the people to visit Jammu and Kashmir and experience the serene splendour of tourist destinations like Tulip Garden.

J&K Bank MD and CEO, Baldev Prakash, said the launch of this e-ticketing platform is very much in line with the government’s focus on public convenience and the comfort of tourists.

He added that for public convenience, we will integrate more such utility services into our digitalization drive to widen the ecosystem of online payments thereby increasing the overall efficiency of the region’s financial system. Principal Secretary, Housing and Urban Development Department, Dheeraj Gupta; Principal Secretary, Industries and Commerce, Ranjan Prakash Thakur; Commissioner Secretary, Forests, Ecology and Environment, Sanjeev Verma; Commissioner Secretary, Floriculture, Parks and Gardens, Sheikh Fayaz; Secretary Tourism, Sarmad Hafeez; Deputy Commissioner Srinagar, Commissioner SMC, Director Handicrafts and Handloom, Director Floriculture and other officers were also present on the occasion.

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