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Tuesday, December 25, 2012

State Tourism Department to Get a Boost Soon: Krishnendu Choudhury

MALDA, 29 NOV: New minister in charge (MIC) of tourism department Krishnendu Choudhury declared a series of plans of the state government to flourish the tourism and turn West Bengal a cynosure for national and international tourists.

“Soon after taking charge as the minister in charge for tourism, I sat with the senior officers and asked them to improvise plans to attract tourists to the state to generate revenues. Dooars and Hills would be our priority. In addition to launch helicopter service between plane and the hill, we are considering of launching similar service for tourists in Sunderban areas also provided the no disturbance is caused to nature and animals,” Choudhury said.

He added, “There are as many as 35 tourist lodges owned by the state government. While the government itself runs 24, 11 tourist lodges have been given on lease. However, it has come to my notice that most of the tourist lodges are not being preferred by the tourists for the shabby condition. Mainak tourist lodge in Siliguri, that once accommodated several VIPs, now preferred by only a handful of guests. I just wonder when innumerable private hotels in famous tourist spots of the state are making adequate profit why are the government tourist lodges trailing?”

The MIC, tourism said, “We are planning to encourage private public partnership (PPP) model in running the tourist lodges. Renovation of these lodges would commence shortly. All tourist lodges would be painted in attractive and decent colors too.”

Choudhury informed that it was observed by him that between Kurseong and Darjeeling there are god places to build lodges for the tourists who prefer to stay at offbeat places. “We would also build up lodges at those places on PPP model again,” he said.

He informed that such proposals have already been discussed with the chief minister Mamata Banerjee and she had appreciated such enterprises. “We are going to talk to the transport department officials son for implementation of such plans. We would speak with the forest department officials either as the forest department has some tourist cottages at different parts of the state,” he added.

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