Srinagar, Mar 16:
Uncertainty is looming large over the reopening of Asia’s largest tulip garden
This follows the
government’s decision to close all the gardens and parks in Srinagar given the
While the flowers
at Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip garden will take a week’s time to bloom, the
department of floriculture is yet to announce the date for the opening of the
“Each year garden
opens after March 25. So far the date
for reopening the garden has not been notified,” said Director, Floriculture
department Farooq Ahmad Rather.
coronavirus scare, he said the floriculture department would wait for the
decision of the government. “Coronavirus
has been declared a pandemic globally. So, we can’t say anything right now. Let
us see what the government decides. We are also waiting for the instruction
from the authorities,” he said.
Rather said a
variety of hyacinth flowers have bloomed in the tulip garden. “If the
temperature soars then tulips will take less time to bloom. Let us hope the
tulip garden remains unaffected by coronavirus,” he said.
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 on the banks of Dal Lake, the Tulip garden is the biggest draw for the
tourists visiting Kashmir.
This year, the garden
is set to showcase 13 lakh tulips, which is one lakh bulbs more than last year.
“It took us
almost Rs 50 to 60 lakh to buy these tulip bulbs from various countries,”
Last year, the
garden was opened on March 31 and 2.58 lakh visitors visited the garden.
scare has affected our business. Travel agents are reporting mass cancellation
of bookings. Even the tulip garden which was the biggest draw in the spring
season is unlikely to be opened for the public,” said president Travel Agents
Association of Kashmir Ashfaq Ahmad Dugg.