Around the time we were in Srinagar two artists from Gwalior also happened to be there. Both of them were reputed artists. One of them, who used to be a friend of my brother, decided to visit Shopian, probably, to take in the Pir Panjaals from closer quarters. We all decided to go in a group.
From Qazigund it took around 2 hours to be in Srinagar. In doing so we travelled through some idyllic country in the Valley. The green fields were bathed in brilliant morning sunshine with distant blue hills in the background made the whole Valley very seductive. No wonder Kashmir became for many years the favourite location for Hindi film shoots.
In the summer of 1957 my father suddenly decided to take a trip to Kashmir. My (late) second brother was posted there and, more importantly, he had s spacious house. My mother was very excited and naturally so. She had not stirred out of Gwalior since father relocated there in 1935. For all of 22 years, she stayed cooped up in that small town.
A lot of cheer has been brought to tiger and wildlife lovers by the latest Tiger Census conducted in late 2014. There seems to have been a revival in its numbers after the dismal count of 2006 when it had registered 1411 tigers. A marginal increase to 1706 was registered in 2011.