Both Dhaka and New Delhi are working to improve connectivity between the two countries to boost trade and tourism, Bangladesh Assistant High Commissioner to India, Shah Mohammad Tanvir Monsur said on Monday. The Governments of Bangladesh and India are working on river routes, rail and air connectivity to boost tourism, he said.
"From next month, the Civil Aviation Ministry of the Government of India is going to launch a direct flight between Guwahati and Dhaka. I am sure that this will address connectivity and boost tourism growth manifold between the two countries," Monsur said, addressing a tourism convention here. "Currently, I am issuing 150 visas daily. I am sure from next month, the number of visas will increase three times or at least 400 every day," he said.
Monsur said Bangladesh will put its best efforts to export and enhance tourism medical, religious, archaeological tourism, between the two countries. "The Government of Bangladesh is working on river connectivity presently. Dredging activity is going on in full swing. The Government of India has extended a line of credit to the tune of USD 7 billion and under the line of credit, the Government of Bangladesh is also establishing connectivity between Bangladesh and NE of India via rail links," he said.
Lauding the natural beauty of Meghalaya, Monsur said, "I endorse the belief that Meghalaya is more beautiful than Scotland. My last posting was in Russia. Before that, I was in Dubai and Japan. I have visited many places but I have never come across a beautiful place like Meghalaya." He said, "It is only in Meghalaya that you will find the clouds and rivers together in the same setting, a wonderful combination. In very few places in the world will you see such a place." The Bangladesh Assistant High Commissioner said "Meghalaya has become an abode of peace. We see the state is disciplined and there were no conflicts. Thanks to the Home Minister." Meghalaya Home Minister James P K Sangma said tourists visiting the state take in as much fresh air as they can but they leave behind trash and toxic wastes. He warned that the trash left behind by tourists could affect the environment and indirectly affect the livelihood of the people of the state dependent on tourism.
Also addressed at the convention, Additional Chief Secretary R V Suchiang said tourism in Meghalaya has increased by over 80 per cent in the past 10 years.
(With inputs from agencies.)