POST TIME: 25 December, 2018 10:08:24 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 25 December, 2018 10:10:11 AM
National election to take toll on tourism sectors
UNB, Cox's Bazar

National election to take toll on  tourism sectors

Businesspersons related to tourism in Cox's Bazar fear that the longest sea beach of the world is going to face a tourist crisis for the national election slated for December 30.

Though it is the peak tourism season, the businessmen are worried that the tourists will stay away from Cox's Bazar days before and after the election.

Normally thousands of tourists gather at Cox's Bazar sea beach to celebrate the December 31st night, ushering in the Gregorian New Year and enjoy the mild-winter in Bangladesh on their vacations. Hotels, motels, resorts and guesthouses of the district remain packed with tourists in advance. That is the usual picture.

This year, the national election will be held on December 30th. With Bangladesh's reputation for election-related violence, it is normal that to avoid untoward situations, tourists will not gather in Cox's Bazar, said the local businessmen expressing their apprehension of huge losses.

Imrul Siddiqi Rumi, former president of Hotel Motel Owners' Association and manager of five-star hotel Seagull, said tourists flock to different spots of the beach town to enjoy their holidays. Normally, hotel booking for the last 10 days of December is done in November. But this time, the scenario is totally different. There is no response in advance bookings this year.

Shafiqur Rahman, vice-president of Cox's Bazar Hotel-Motel Guest House Owners' Association, said there are 300 hotels in Cox's Bazar. The hotel owners normally remain busy during the last days of November and the early days of December renovating hotels. "There's no possibility this time to get back the money spent," he said.

 Md Kamal, the Deputy Commissioner of Cox's Bazar, said the tourism industry in Cox's Bazar is being developed in different ways. "All the preparations have been taken to ensure the safe and comfortable visit of tourists."

He said all the tourist spots are also under special surveillance. "Whether tourists come or not, the district administration is ready to welcome them," the DC said.

There is a tourist cell of the administration led by an executive magistrate which is also under regular surveillance, Kamal added.