Tourist arrivals in Kashmir decline sharply, IGP appeals for peace

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Srinagar Jun 26 (UNI) Tourist arrivals from different parts of the country to Kashmir valley had declined sharply, a senior police officer said and appealed to people to maintain peace.

The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and state police personnel have been asked to exercise restrain while dealing with the protestors, (IGP) Kashmir zone, S M Sahai said here today.

He said about ten thousand tourists were reaching here everyday.

This, he said, was in addition to Amarnath pilgrims.

Those connected with the tourism industry directly and indirectly were expecting record number of tourists this season.

However, due to protests and strike, the number of tourist arrival has decreased sharply.

This will have an adverse affect on our economy, he said adding the traders and others would suffer if tourists arrival decline further.

About the situation, the police chief in Kashmir appealed to people to maintain peace. He said during the past two days, two people were killed and several others, including security force and police personnel, were injured.

Mr Sahai said CRPF and police personnel on the ground have been directed to exercise utmost restrain while dealing with the demonstrators.

Efforts are being made to hold a meeting of senior and respectable citizens of various localities and seek their help in restoration of normalcy in the valley.

This, he added, could not be done because of the strike and prevailing situation.

The IGP said reports of protests have been reported from various parts of Srinagar and some parts of Ganderbal and Budgam area.

He claimed that most parts in North and in South kashmir remained calm.

He said protesters have even damaged ambulance, carrying patients and injured.

The death of three people was very unfortunate adding 40 security personnel were also injured in these clashes, he quipped.

He said the demonstrators damaged public and waqf board property, vehicles, including those carrying yatris and tourists.

Mr Sahai said Police will provide all possible help to the family of Farooq Ahmed Rather who was killed by a stray bullet at Mazhama yesterday.

UNI BAS SV HT1707

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