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September 02, 2010

Restaurant project under hyacinth threat

SILCHAR, Sept 1: How public money is wasted in the name of development can well be understood from the fact that a floating restaurant launch with the investment of Rs 30 lakh by the Department of Tourism is lying uncared and virtually grounded amidst hyacinths. It was on February 15, 2009 that the much vaunted and widely publicized fully air conditioned tourist launch was inaugurated by Rockybul Hussain, Minister of Forest and Tourism, in Ramnagar area, four km from here, one of the greatest natural water reservoirs of Cachar district after Chatla, believed to be the left over of Barak river centuries ago due to geophysical upheaval.
It was an ambitious project of the Tourism Department which the minister said would attract tourists from home as well as outside for a pleasant ride with delicious dishes on the vast expanse of the lake with green cover around and a bucolic feel of the surroundings, overlooking Masimpur hillocks. The inaugural function was attended among others by Sontosh Mohan Dev, former Union Minister, Ajit Singh, Parliamentary Secretary Finance, Bithika Dev, MLA, high officials, journalists and common people.
Rockybul Hussain complimented Ajit Singh for his sincere efforts to develop tourism infrastructure in Barak Valley and attract visitors from the valley, State and beyond and pointed out that since tourism was also like any other industry, it needed necessary publicity also. What is more the minister revealed that North Cachar Hills, now called Dima Hasao, Karbi Anglong and Barak Valley would be brought on tourism circuit in order to develop the destinations of historical as well as beautiful scenic locations. He also added to say that rupees six crore was sanctioned for the development of tourism in these areas.
In fact, in order to bring places of tourist interest of this valley into focus, Rs 20 lakh was spent for holding ‘Barak Utsav’ in 2005 here with the participation of cultural troupes from Assam, West Bengal and Tripura, besides involving the local artistes. Nothing tangible came out as not even a single tourist could be attracted since then. No infrastructure like the basic means of communication exists in the valley. It is in the final analysis a wastage of public money just for the sake of holding functions and festivals. (The Sentinel)

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