Stone pelting harming economic activities in Kashmir: Khanna

JAMMU: Expressing concern over the tragic incident of stone pelting on tourists in Valley and the resultant death of one from among them, BJP National Vice President and J&K Prabhari, Avinash Rai Khanna on Tuesday termed the act aimed at harming the economic activities in the summer capital.
“This attack has come at a time when the tourist season is just commencing and all the stakeholders linked with the tourist industry were keenly waiting for the arrival of tourists in large numbers”, Khanna said in a statement issued here on Tuesday.
He said that it goes without saying that large number of people not only from different parts of the country but also from abroad come to enjoy natural beauty and picturesque spots of Kashmir valley every year.
“Such incidents only come as a shock for all, including the tourists, who have planned their visits in advance bookings in hotels, lodges, huts, houseboats etc,” said Mr Khanna and added that right from big hotel owners to houseboat owners, Shikarawala to rehriwala, bus to taxi operators, all are directly dependent on tourist influx, particularly during the peak season, which is in these ongoing summer months.
In wake of the attack and also keeping in view the forthcoming Amarnath Yatra, the government has to be cautious and instead of soft peddling approach, it must deal with a firm hand with stone pelters, he said.