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Pahalgam closed for day picnickers on weekends

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Srinagar: District administration Anantnag on Wednesday barred day picnickers from visiting tourist destination Pahalgam on Saturdays and Sundays in a bid to prevent a possible COVID-19 resurgence due to heavy tourist influx at the resort of late.

The administration also fixed a fine of Rs 1000 for violators of COVID-19 SOPs.

An order issued in this regard by Deputy Commissioner Anantnag, Dr Piyush Singla, who is also the Chairman District Disaster Management Authority, said a large number of people are thronging Pahalgam especially on the weekends, which poses danger of COVID-19 resurgence.

While imposing restrictions under section 144 of CrPc, Disaster Management Act, 2005 and Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897, the order by DC Anantnag directed that only those tourists having done advance bookings at the hotels shall be allowed to proceed towards Pahalgam while barring entry to day picnickers.

SDPOs Srigufwara and Aishmuqam have been asked to establish checkpoints at Aishmuqam, Langanbal, Nunwan and Srigufwara to ensure that only bona fide tourists having advance hotel bookings are allowed an entry.

The DC Anantnag also directed concerned officers including SSP Anantnag and CEO, Tourist Development Authority Pahalgam for necessary action on this regard.

Besides, a fine of Rs 1000 shall be imposed on locals, tourists and hotel staff found roaming without masks, the order said.

It also prohibited haphazard pitching of tents at the tourist destination while directing concerned officials to designate a particular area for the tents.

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