Tourism officials seal 7 ‘Yanner’ hotels, guest houses for operating illegally

SHABIR AHMAD
ANANTNAG: A day after this newspaper carried on the illegal commercial operation of hotels and guest houses at Yanner, an ecologically fragile area of Pahalgam resort, tourism authorities Saturday sealed at least seven commercial establishments.
Sources said that taking cognizance of the report, assistant director tourism and Sub-divisional police officer Pahalgam, visited the spot this morning and found at least seven hotels, huts and guest operating illegally.
“All the seven establishments found operating in violation of the norms were sealed on spot,” sources said.
Some of the hotels and guest houses which were sealed included Lidder Resort, Kashy Resort, Lidder Front View, Ahmad Resort and Grand Lords.
Assistant Director, tourism, Tariq Ahmad Naikoo, confirmed the sealing of hotels and guest houses found operating illegally.
“We along with a team of police officials headed by SDPO Pahalgam rushed to the spot this morning and found seven huts, guest houses and hotels doing illegal commercial operation. All of them were sealed on spot and further action will follow against them ,”Tourism officer said.
He said that the kitchens of all the hotels sealed were very unhygienic.
“Besides imposing fine on them last month we had also warned them against continuing their illegal commercial operation but they always ignored our warnings leaving us with no option but to go for sealing,” he added.
He said that none of the hotels or guest houses in the area have registration of the tourism department for commercial operation. “Though most of them have applied for registration but have failed to produce the required documents like NOC of the PDA and pollution control board which are the basis for granting registration for commercial operation,” tourism officer said.