AP PHOTOS: Year on, India's lockdowns ruin Kashmir's economy

A deserted house boat is seen parked at Nigeen lake in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Monday, July 27,2020. Indian-controlled Kashmir's economy ...
A Kashmiri shopkeeper sits at the entrance of his half closed shop during lockdown in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, July 27, 2020. Indian-contr...
Kashmiri hotel manager Khurshid Ahmed stands at the reception counter of Hotel Standard during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Srina...
A Kashmiri waiter cleans a table inside a restaurant of Hotel Standard during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Srinagar, Indian contr...
Kashmiri waiter Ghulam Nabi adjusts the curtains inside an unoccupied room at Hotel New York during a lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus i...
A taxi stand, which is never closed on normal days, is seen shut near the Dal lake in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir,Tuesday, July 28, 2020. Indi...
A Kashmiri boatman rows his boat through a closed floating market on the Dal Lake during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Srinagar, I...
A Kashmiri woman rows her boat near unoccupied houseboats at Nigeen Lake in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, July 16, 2020. Indian-controlled Kash...
Kashmiri boatmen rest as they wait for customers on the deserted banks of the Dal Lake in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, July 20, 2020. The regi...
A man walks at a deserted market area during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir,  July 22, 2020. In...
Kashmiri man Ghulam Qadir Ota and family members eat a meal inside their house boat during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus at a Nigeen ...
A Kashmiri houseboat owner Ghulam Qadir shows his guest entry book which was last filled in July 2019, in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir,Tuesday,...
Kashmiri houseboat owner Ghulam Qadir Ota offers prayers inside his houseboat during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus at Nigeen Lake in ...
Kashmiri man Illiyas Ahamad cleans an unoccupied houseboat at Nigeen Lake during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Srinagar, Indian co...
Pigeons fly at a deserted market area during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir,  July 22, 2020. In...
An overview of the Dal Lake in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Oct. 1, 2019. Indian-controlled Kashmir's economy is yet to recover from a colossa...
Kashmiri taxi drivers walk near their parked vehicles inside a deserted tourist taxi stand during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Sr...

A deserted house boat is seen parked at Nigeen lake in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Monday, July 27,2020. Indian-controlled Kashmir's economy ...

A Kashmiri shopkeeper sits at the entrance of his half closed shop during lockdown in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, July 27, 2020. Indian-contr...

Kashmiri hotel manager Khurshid Ahmed stands at the reception counter of Hotel Standard during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Srina...

A Kashmiri waiter cleans a table inside a restaurant of Hotel Standard during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Srinagar, Indian contr...

Kashmiri waiter Ghulam Nabi adjusts the curtains inside an unoccupied room at Hotel New York during a lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus i...

A taxi stand, which is never closed on normal days, is seen shut near the Dal lake in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir,Tuesday, July 28, 2020. Indi...

A Kashmiri boatman rows his boat through a closed floating market on the Dal Lake during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Srinagar, I...

A Kashmiri woman rows her boat near unoccupied houseboats at Nigeen Lake in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, July 16, 2020. Indian-controlled Kash...

Kashmiri boatmen rest as they wait for customers on the deserted banks of the Dal Lake in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, July 20, 2020. The regi...

A man walks at a deserted market area during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, July 22, 2020. In...

Kashmiri man Ghulam Qadir Ota and family members eat a meal inside their house boat during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus at a Nigeen ...

A Kashmiri houseboat owner Ghulam Qadir shows his guest entry book which was last filled in July 2019, in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir,Tuesday,...

Kashmiri houseboat owner Ghulam Qadir Ota offers prayers inside his houseboat during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus at Nigeen Lake in ...

Kashmiri man Illiyas Ahamad cleans an unoccupied houseboat at Nigeen Lake during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Srinagar, Indian co...

Pigeons fly at a deserted market area during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, July 22, 2020. In...

An overview of the Dal Lake in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Oct. 1, 2019. Indian-controlled Kashmir's economy is yet to recover from a colossa...

Kashmiri taxi drivers walk near their parked vehicles inside a deserted tourist taxi stand during lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus in Sr...

SRINAGAR, India (AP) — A year ago, Abdul Rashid was making a living by selling flowers to tourists in hundreds of ornate pinewood houseboats in Dal Lake in Srinagar, the main city in Indian-controlled Kashmir.

When India suddenly scrapped disputed Kashmir's semi-autonomous status, followed by an unprecedented security clampdown, economic ruin ensued.

“It was not just a political change. It destroyed our livelihood,” said Rashid, 60, who has now turned to growing vegetables to feed his family.

Days before the Aug. 5, 2019, decision by the central government in New Delhi, authorities asked hundreds of thousands of tourists, Hindu pilgrims and migrant workers to leave the territory, shutting its economy. Since then, tens of thousands of jobs have been lost.

The stunning Himalayan region has known little but conflict since 1947, when British rule of the subcontinent divided it between the newly created India and Pakistan.

After a series of political blunders, broken promises and a crackdown on dissent, Kashmiris launched a full-blown armed revolt in 1989, seeking unification with Pakistan or complete independence. India dubbed the insurgency terrorism abetted by Pakistan, a charge Islamabad denies.

Hundreds of the colorful hand-carved houseboats, known as shikaras, lie deserted, mostly anchored still on the desolate lake. Hotels are empty and there are hardly any tourists.

Some businesses had resumed with the partial lifting of the security and communication clampdown earlier this year. However, Indian authorities enforced another harsh lockdown in March to combat the coronavirus pandemic, further emaciating the local economy.

The Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industries pegged the economic loses in the region at $5.3 billion and about half a million jobs lost since August last year.

The 7-decade-old Hotel Standard in Srinagar had a staff of 30, according to its manager Khurshid Ahmed. Now there are just three. The only activity inside the once-bustling place is by the cleaning staff.

Mohammed Rajab, a taxi driver for 37 years, hasn’t been hired even once since last August. “I parked my taxi at our stand few days before August 5 last year. It’s still there along with 250 others,” he said.

Tens of thousands of daily wage workers, like Rajab, have suffered the most.

Mohammad Lateef, a boatman, used to ferry tourists around the lake. He now sells cucumbers and cigarettes to locals along its banks.

“We’ve not earned a single penny for a year now,” said Ghulam Qadir Ota, a houseboat owner. “All we have are these boats. We don’t have any other means to earn.”