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Read this if you plan to visit Tulip Garden later this month

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Srinagar:  Come enjoy the tulip bloom amid strict Covid protocols.

As the countdown begins for the re-opening of Asia’s biggest tulip garden, the government has come up with dos and don’ts for people visiting the garden, which includes proper sanitation and avoiding large crowds.

After a gap of two years, Jammu and Kashmir government has decided to reopen Asia’s biggest tulip garden after March 20.

Expecting a huge rush of visitors this year given the full occupancy in hotels till April, the Floriculture department has framed various SOPs to make the garden a Covid-free zone.

Director Floriculture Farooq Ahmad Rather told The Kashmir Monitor that carrying eatables has been banned in the garden.

“Every person will have to wear a facemask. He or she will undergo a thermal scanning. Further, people will not be allowed to gather so as social distancing norms will be followed strictly. The visitors will not be allowed to carry any eatable or beverages inside the garden in order to keep it clean and free from spread of covid-19,” he said.

Rather said the garden is expected to open “anytime” after March 20 with extra-ordinary arrangements being made to prevent the spread of Covid.

“We will also install placards to brief visitors about the dos and don’ts. All arrangements are being made to ensure a good flow of people at the garden,” he said.

Last year, the government had not thrown the garden open due to the Covid lockdown.

Director floriculture said that more than 1.5 million tulips will be showcased this year.  Last year the department had planted 13 lakh tulips bulbs, which was one lakh more than 2019.

Rather said they have planted 62 varieties of tulips with almost five lakh new varieties being imported from Holland. “Last year we had planted 54 varieties. We are making new innovations each year to attract tourists worldwide,” he said.

Rather said in addition to the tulips, at least 20,000 hyacinths and 20,000 mascaras will enthrall visitors in spring.

Spread over 600 kanals (20 kanals form one hectare) of land, the tulip cultivation has been done on 200 kanals of the garden area. Located in the foothills of the Zabarwan hills, the Tulip garden has been the biggest draw for the tourists since it was opened in 2007.