GUWAHATI, Aug 21 - A 16-member team from Bangladesh has confirmed its visit to the State on September 17 next with the objective of promoting and having a mutual understanding of the diverse culture, religion, land and the people of Bangladesh and Assam. This was decided in the Bangladesh International Tourism Fair (BITF), the biggest tourism fair in Bangladesh, in which a delegation of Assam Tourism Development Corporation (ATDC) Ltd also took part.
The meet was held from August 10-12. A total of 160 stakeholders of the tourism industry along with delegates representing 15 foreign countries participated in the fair. The fair was inaugurated by the Minister of Civil Aviation & Tourism, Bangladesh Rasheed Khan Menon. The Vice-Chairman of ATDC Ltd, Navadeep Kalita speaking at the inaugural function gave a glimpse of the myriad tourism destinations of Assam which can turn into a potential tourism hub for the South-East Asian countries as well as for the tourists from all over the world. The delegates who participated in the fair were invited to visit the Assam Tourism Stall to have a detailed discussion/ interaction/ with the Assam Tourism Officials. The team of Assam Tourism comprised Moitreyee Das and Manas Pratim Thakur, Tourist Information Officers and Hiran Kumar Saikia, Assistant Tourist Information Officer. The team under the leadership of Navadeep Kalita had discussions with the officials from Bangladesh regarding inflow of tourists to the State. This was stated in a press release.
They also had a threadbare discussion with the members of the Tour Operators Association of Bangladesh (TOAB) to enable the tourists to have easy access to visit the State. The president of TOAB, Toufiq Uddin Ahmed raised the issues on restrictions of travel by road especially through Tamabeel, Dawki entry point as well as multiple entry and exit points to this part of the country. Kalita and his team apprised the matter to the First Secretary of the Indian Embassy to Bangladesh and requested him to take appropriate action regarding the matter. The First Secretary assured to look into the issue taking it on priority basis.
The foreign delegates of different South-East Asian countries like Mauritius, Myanmar, Thailand, Bhutan etc., showed their interest in sending tourists to the State specially to the largest-inhabited riverine island Majuli, the World Heritage Site Kaziranga and Manas National Park, Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary, world famous Hindu shrine of Kamakhya temple and Hajo, a confluence of three religions – Hinduism, Islam and Buddhism.The delegates of Myanmar, Thailand and Bhutan showed their interest in promoting the Buddhist Circuit namely Guwahati, Hajo, Titabor (Jorhat), Nam-Phake village of Sivasagar, Tai-Phake village of Margherita in Tinsukia district etc.
The team from Bangladesh which will visit India on September 17 proposes to visit Guwahati, Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary, Mayong, Kaziranga and Manas National Park, Hajo, Sualkuchi, Madan Kamdev etc. The team will be led by renowned chef Tony Khan and will comprise famous award winning film director and ad guru Amitabh Reza, well-known film actress Rumana Akhtar Mukti. To promote culinary tourism, it was proposed to hold an ethnic Food festival of the local delicacies of Assam and Bangldesh. Amitabh Reza offered to present his award winning film Aina Bazi in the food festival. Momtaj Begum, Member of Parliament as well as folk singer of Bangladesh proposed to enthral the crowd during the food festival with melodious songs. Amitabh Reza also expressed his wish to endorse Assam as a promising film tourism destination by shooting at some of the mesmerising places of ‘Awesome Assam’ as well as shoot at some destinations for commercial advertisements.
Navadeep Kalita expressed his pleasure and informed them that the Government encourages promoting Assam as a potential Film Tourism, Medical Tourism, Cultural Tourism and Educational Tourism destination and assured that it would make all efforts to support the venture.