Naming tulip garden after Indira Gandhi, relevant : J-K Min

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Srinagar, Mar 31 (UNI) Jammu and Kashmir Minister for Social Welfare and senior vice president of the Pradesh Congress Abdul Gani Vakil has said that naming Asia's largest Tulip garden here after late prime minister India Gandhi was more relevant due to her Kashmir origin.

Rejecting the criticism from some quarters, including separatist leaders, he said there was nothing wrong in it because of her Kashmir origin and great love of Nehru family for Kashmir valley and its people.

A number of organisations and individuals criticised the government for changing the name of the garden from ''Sirajbagh'' to Indira Gandhi Memorial garden.

The garden, constructed on 100 kanals of land at the foothill of Zabarwan hills overlooking Dal Lake with more than 60 varieties of tulip, was inaugurated and dedicated to people by UPA chairman Sonia Gandhi on Saturday.

He said the fascinating gift in the shape of unique Tulip garden, which would ultimately bloom 30 lakhs tulips at a time, would emerge as an important tourist attraction in coming years.

Mr Vakil said that Mughal gardens and Tulip garden situated in the picturesque Zabarwan foothills reflected the charming beauty and serenity of the land of great sufi saints, who always preached love and peace.

He beseeched upon politicians to abstain from raising slogans that create hatred and trigger violence. ''Let love and brotherhood rule the roost and give way to peace'', he added.

He said that irreparable loss to life and property during last 18 years of turmoil had given heavy jolt to state's development and economy. ''A new phase of progress has started which needs to be strengthened'', he said.

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