July 04, 2020
Home  »  Magazine  »  National  » Covid-19/Good Samaritans »  COVID-19 Good Samaritans: Keeping Kashmir Safe, Why Shah Abbas Hotel On Dal Lake Is Heaven

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: Keeping Kashmir Safe, Why Shah Abbas Hotel On Dal Lake Is Heaven

For the sake of Kashmiri students facing quarantine, hotelier Irshad Mirza happily gave up his hotel to the government when most did not

Google + Linkedin Whatsapp
Follow Outlook India On News
COVID-19 Good Samaritans: Keeping Kashmir Safe, Why Shah Abbas Hotel On Dal Lake Is Heaven
COVID-19 Good Samaritans: Keeping Kashmir Safe, Why Shah Abbas Hotel On Dal Lake Is Heaven

In this hour of direst need, all, barring one, shrank when a sacrifice was sought. As Kashmiri students from different countries, mostly Bangladesh, started returning to Srinagar in mid-March following the coronavirus outbreak, the government approached different hotels in Srinagar, asking them to house them for the mandatory 14-day quarantine. As expected, the owners refused, conjuring a deadly cocktail of contamination and future loss of business. The popular Centaur Hotel, for example, cited risk to staff, who lodged a pre-emptive protest. All except one man--45-year-old hotelier Irshad Mirza, who put his hand up and asked the government to use his property.

“I told them my hotel is available,” says Mirza, who owns Shah Abbas hotel on Srinagar’s Dal Lake. “If the virus can be contained due to quarantine and other isolation measures, it will save Kashmir; if Kashmir is safe, my family is safe,” reasons Mirza lucidly. His offer was gratefully accepted.

“After the first batch had completed quarantine in my hotel, I told the administration they can continue to use the facility for the same purpose,” Mirza says. He scoffs at other hoteliers’ argument that this would devalue the property, pointing to examples in Italy and Spain where hundreds of hotel rooms were converted into isolation wards.

Mirza’s noble gesture was quickly acknowledged and Srinagar deputy commissioner Shahid Choudhary took to twitter thus: “Tiger zinda hai!! Let’s clap for Mr Irshad who came all the way to offer keys of his hotel to help us”.

Established in 1982, Shah Abbas is one of Srinagar’s well-known hotels with 88 well-furnished rooms. “We handed over all our rooms and provided our usual service to the students,” Mirza discloses.

That Mirza proved an inspiration became apparent when other hoteliers across Kashmir offered their facilities for quarantine. Even in picturesque Pahalgam, hoteliers followed Mirza’s lead. Indeed, a senior official says Mirza showed the way and “helped erase misconceptions about the virus”.


COVID-19 Good Samaritans: Empathy, Its Penumbra

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: When RV Ramanan's Free Dialysis Shuttle Was Godsent

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: School Boy Arnav Rathore Is A Blessing For Needy Senior Citizens

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: Transporting 8000 Kilos Of Rice, Age No Barrier For The Sekappans

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: Offering An Entire Hospital Free, This Doctor Does The Unthinkable

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: 1500 Starving Monkeys, Goats and Dogs Get A Meal A Day

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: Donating Fodder Online, This Mumbai Entrepreneur Duo Keeps Gaushalas Happy And Healthy

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: Money Can't Buy Goodwill, Why This Garment Shop Owner Has A Heart Of Gold

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: No Time To Grieve Father's Death, This Cuttack Man Shows Amazing Work Ethic

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: Meet The Hoax Busters And Their Unique Fight Against Fake Information

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: How A Brand Specialist 'Sells' Time To Raise Funds For Corona Treatment

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: A Banker For The Migrant Worker, It's Business With A Difference

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: It's A Birdie! A Young Golfer's Drive To Care For The Underprivileged

COVID-19 Good Samaritans: Plugging The Gap, How Citizens Have Risen To Combat Hunger

Next Story >>
Google + Linkedin Whatsapp

The Latest Issue

Outlook Videos