Illegal huts in Pahalgam: Dir Tourism seeks report

SHABIR AHMAD
Anantnag: Tourism authorities have sought list of hotels operating illegally in ecologically fragile area in Pahalgam resort.
The directions came after Kashmir Reader reported on Monday that dozens of huts and hotels have come up in violations of laws in Yaneer and started operations.
“We had no information about illegal commercial operation of hotels or huts at Yanner. Now we have taken cognizance of the report carried by Kashmir Reader. I have directed the Tourism officials posted in the area to visit the spot on Tuesday and check if the hotels or guest houses are operating illegally there,” said Director Tourism, Talat Parvez.
The officials have been directed to submit their report immediately, Parvez said. “I am waiting for the report of the officials. If any of the hotelier, hut or guest house owners is found operating without registration, strong action will be taken against them.”
Asked if the department will grant registration to the illegal hotels and guest houses, Parvez said, “They have to fulfill many formalities for registration. The NoC from the Pahalgam Development Authority is the basis for grant of registration to any hotel or hut. Unless they fulfill all the formalities they cannot be granted registration.”
He said that since there is a ban on constructions imposed by the High Court in the area they will have to study the court order also. “We will also have to see if the hotels, huts or guest houses that have come up at the spot are legal or illegal,” Parvez said.