Suspected militants planted an improved explosive device (IED) at tourist hub Boulevard on the banks of Dal lake near a hotel housing a liquor shop.
The IED was detected during a routine patrol. "The bomb was detected in a tin container near Hotel Heemal," said a police officer.
The police said the bomb, left in a parking lot, was defused without causing any loss of life. Thousands of tourists, at present, stay in hotels housed on the bank of Boulevard, which stretches up to 22 km. This year, the night life had also returned to the valley with tourists flocking favourite destinations late in the night. More than four lakh tourists have traveled Kashmir so far.
A police officer on the condition of anonymity said the bomb could have been targeted at the liquor shop and not tourists. Militants banned all liquor shops in Kashmir in 1990s. Very few liquor shops function in Kashmir valley now.
"I do not think it was explosives. It’s a rumour," said SDPO Nehru Park Ghulam Geelani. It seems the police in the evening decided not to scare the tourists with such news.