Shopian: The colourful murals and graffiti painted on the street walls in south Kashmir's Shopian town force the pedestrians to slow down their pace and take a look.
The street walls in the town, which were rather bare until recently have been embellished with different murals and graffiti, evoking the feeling of delight besides carrying meaningful messages.
'Learn, Play and Grow Together' are the words painted on the outer wall of Girls Higher Secondary School.
On another wall near the court road, two distressed children painted in blue, green and black hues attract the eyeballs of those walking past the wall.
Over the past few weeks, the mural artists could be seen working on the bare walls of the town at various locations.
"It is a part of the beautification drive", says Jahid Azad, Executive Officer Municipal Council Shopian( MCS).
Apart from the artwork, the construction work on a clock tower, antique decorative lights and some parks are going on at full throttle.
"A clock tower will soon come up at GoleChakri, the commercial nerve centre of the town. It will add to the beauty of town," Azad said.
He said that the construction work on the three parks at Sheikh Mohalla, Town Hall and Largam had also been taken up by the municipal council.
According to Azad, the town would soon wear a different look.
"We have already installed more than a dozen antique decorative lights near Jamia Masjid and are planning to install more such lights at multiple locations in the town," Azad said.
A coffee shop is also being constructed near the court road.
"The work on the coffee shop is going on. It will be thrown open immediately after the construction is complete," Azad said.
The MCS is also planning to publish travel literature to document the tourists places.
"We intend to publish a guide titled 'ShopianUnravelled'. We have already invited summaries, articles and descriptions from the people," Azad said.
Javed Ahmad, a local said that it was for the first time that the district administration had taken up a beautification project.
"The district was always ignored by the successive governments. It lags behind other districts in terms of development. The administration has taken up a good project but it should not be left half way through," Ahmad said.