Tourists and yatris leaving Kashmir

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Srinagar, Jun 27: Amarnath yatris and tourists were leaving the Kashmir valley in whatever mode of transport available since last evening.

However, fares being charged from them by the private transporters, were very high as compared to the actual rate fixed by the government from Srinagar to Jammu.

A UNI correspondent, who visited Sheikh Bagh and Gantha Ghar area of the Civil Lines late last night saw more than two dozen Tata Sumo and Tempo vehicles leaving for Jammu.

'We want to leave the Valley as soon as possible, we could not get any food for the past two days because of the closure of all hotels and other shops,'' a yatri S Sharma from Delhi said.

He said hundreds of yatris were still stranded at different places, including the base camp Baltal.

He further alleged that there was no transport arrangement for the yatris who had to reach Srinagar in private vehicles.

Hundreds of tourists and yatris were also stranded at the Tourist Reception Centre (TRC) here as the number of government buses was very less.

Later, private buses were pressed into service to take them to Jammu.

About two hundreds buses and other vehicles left for Jammu with yatris from Dalgate and other city areas early this morning.

A passenger was being charged between Rs 500 to Rs 600 against Rs 300 being charged a week ago.

Tourist arrivals from different parts of the country to Kashmir valley is almost zero for the past four days.

Official sources said about 10,000 tourists were reaching here everyday, which was in addition to Amarnath pilgrims.

A record number of tourists arrival was expected during this season.

However, due to protests and strikes, the number of tourist arrival was almost zero for the past four days.

UNI

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