3 Pahalgam hotels fined for operating illegally

SHABIR AHMAD
Anantnag: The tourism authorities have penalized three hotels for operating illegally in Yanner area of ecologically fragile tourist resort of Pahalgam.
The move came after Kashmir Reader carried a report last week on the commercial operation of hotels, huts and guest houses at Yanner.
Sources said that on the directions of Director, Tourism, Talat Parvez, officials of the Tourism Department visited the spot and found three hotels operating without registration.
The hotel owners were fined on spot for illegal commercial operation, the sources said.
Tourism officer, Pahalgam, Rubeena Shaheen, confirmed the action against hoteliers and hut owners. “I visited the spot and found three hoteliers doing illegal commercial operation. All of them were fined,” she said, adding that that all of them were warned against operating illegally.
“The hoteliers were strictly directed to stop their illegal practice. If they don’t abide by the directive we will we will seal their establishments,” the Tourism officer said. She said that they will not allow any hotelier or hut owner to operate without registration.
Yanner is scenic spot eight kms down to Pahalgam. The spot is emerging as one of the favorite tourist destinations for its enchanting beauty. The land mafia shifted its focus from main Pahalgam to Yaneer after the J&K High Court banned constructions in Pahalgam a few years ago.
Over 150 structures including hotels, huts and guest houses have come up at Yaneer almost in the middle of Lidder river during last four years. Though the spot was brought under the ambit of Pahalgam Development Authority and the High Court ordered ban on constructions on Lidder banks last year, the constructions continue to come up there at the cost of fragile environs of the area.