Wednesday, April 11, 2012


By: Bilal Bashir Bhat
Srinagar April 11, 2012 (Only Kasmir): Any person hailing from the country or from outside India visiting Kashmir as a tourist, first takes fancy at visiting the tulip garden at any cost.
The enchanting garden, situated at the foothills of Zabarwan, was the creation of the imagination of former State chief minister Ghulam Nabi Azad who offered to the people of Kashmir this wonderful and fascinating gift of nature carved out of a huge chunk of desolate land belonging to the State.
The garden, now covering an area of 250 kanals of land, is in full bloom with one million tulips of all colours laid with great aesthetic sense across the sprawling garden.
These days, both domestic and foreign tourists come to Kashmir mainly to have a look of the splendid garden because the colourful tulips have a very brief span of life hardly lasting one month’s time.
But there are apprehensions that in case the garden is left to the present state of very bad affairs, it might perish within a very short period of time.
At present there are no required arrangements to preserve the tulip roots in a scientific way for which any able official of the Floriculture department need to be sent to Netherlands for receiving proper training.
Unattended and dilapidated paths, lack of required number of public conveniences, absence of standard food stalls, extension of the space providing facilities of paid parking within the premises of the garden and not providing the visitors entertainment of musical evenings, are the telling tales of the official apathy, callousness and criminal negligence. The proposal of setting up of a musical fountain has been gathered dust in the concerned administrative offices.
After Azad, successive State governments least bothered about the proper maintenance of the garden. The VIPs and other high ups have been paying pleasure visits to the garden only to be publicised in print media and on television channels but the repeated requests made to them more often than not in this regard have all along fallen on deaf ears.
Javen Ahmad Shah, the Floriculture Officer, who dedicates his whole day from dawn to dusk probably also praying that the concerned authorities open their eyes and see for themselves that the garden is not met with an untimely death.(OK)


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