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10 June, 2017 09:44:48 PM
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Huge investment on cards to make Mohamya a tourism hotspot

Independent Online Desk
Huge investment on cards to make Mohamya a tourism hotspot

The government is going to take necessary steps with a big investment plan for further developing and branding Mohamaya, an eye-catching hillside lake in Mirsarai, Chittagong, as a popular tourist hotspot as it now lacks, publicity, adequate, infrastructures and care.

Tour operators and local elite think Mohamaya, the country's second largest Lake with ecstatic natural beauty and an 11-sqkm area, can draw a greater number of tourists if it could properly be branded with regular maintenance and better security arrangement.

Even, Bangladesh Tourism Board (BTB) CEO Dr Md Nasir Uddin has very little knowledge about the panoramic beautiful tourism site as he said it is not under their jurisdiction for maintenance.

However, there is a light of hope as the Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister Rashed Khan Menon told UNB that they are working out plans to develop the spot further and brand it both at home and abroad through massive publicity.

"We've already talked to local MP (Housing and Public Works Minister) about Mohamaya Lake, and we'll take required steps to make the site even more attractive and secure to catch the attention of tourists," he said.

On December 29, 2010, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the Mohamaya Lake and Irrigation Project, situated two kilometers east of Dhaka-Chittagong Highway and also six kilometers within the Mirsarai upazila headquarters.

The tourism project has immense natural qualities to attract nature-lovers and pastime-makers from home and abroad, but it needs proper protection and maintenance, said AKM Nurul Alam, a renowned local businessman.

Currently, he said, an approach road from Dhaka-Chittagong Highway and the roads that were constructed in the lake area have remained in a very bad shape for lack of maintenance.

"There should be good security arrangements for the tourists, especially during the evening, as now many female visitors feel insecure at that time. The amusement facilities should also be increased with modern and popular rides and replacing the mechanised boats with speedboats to draw more visitors," Alam suggested.

"This has been an astonishing tourism spot with a charming hillside lake and pristine natural beauty, but utterly neglected one," said Humauyn Kabir, a Bangladeshi expatriate living in Canada hailing from Mirsarai.

During his recent visit to it, he got disappointed over the poor maintenance of the placid landscape as it left strewn with rubbishes like plastic water bottles and bags, cigarette butts, cigarette packets, paper, paper bags, tissue papers. "It's necessary to protect it from various hazards, particularly littering."

Kabir also voiced disappointment as local goons are running a chain of slums in the area, creating a serious security concern for the visitors.

Talking to UNB, Tour Operators Association of Bangladesh (Toab) immediate-past president Akbaruddin Ahmad said though Mohamaya is one of the fantastic and potential tourist spots, people hardy know about it as there is no publicity of it.

He said Bangladesh Tourism Board (BTB) which is mainly responsible for promoting and branding the tourist spots has not been playing any role in this regard.

Ahmad said the authorities should develop infrastructure of the Mohamaya with quality hotel, motel and more amusement facilities. "Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation can invest for the development of the spot or can hand it over to any private company."

Bangladesh Inbound Tour Operators' Association ex-senior vice-president Suman Talukder also echoed Ahmad, saying they are now sending local and few tourists to Mohamaya on their own initiatives as people don't know about it. "Mohamaya will be able to draw huge tourists, including foreign ones, if the government can brand it as a tourist destination through publicity and development of the spot."

BTB CEO Nasir Uddin said he will gather information about Mohamaya and take steps for making it known to local and foreign tourists.

Mirsarai Upazila Nirbahai Office Zia Ahmed Suman said the government has taken some initiatives, including improving the approach road, setting up an Ansar camp, constructing posh washrooms and toilets and replacing the engine-run boats with battery-run ones, to make the spot secure and more attractive.

About the slums devolved near the spot, the UNO said he has already directed authorities concerned to demolish the shanties from there very soon.UNB.

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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