GUWAHATI, May 30 – Sikkim Governor Balmiki Prasad Singh today stressed the need for enhanced bilateral interaction between Sikkim and the other seven States of the North-east in the spheres of tourism, culture, education and business.
The Governor who formally inaugurated the Sikkim Guest House located at Panjabari (near Sankardev Kalakshetra) felt that the guest house, apart from meeting the needs of travellers from Sikkim, would be able to play a key role in disseminating information about Sikkim among those interested in knowing and visiting the Himalayan State.
“I am sure the guest house will act as a tourist information centre here for those willing to visit Sikkim. It should provide tourism-related information like how best to visit Sikkim, where to stay and so on,” Singh said, adding that he expected it to reflect the typical Sikkimese hospitality and cultural ethos.
Drawing a parallel between Sikkim and Assam, Singh said that both were ancient seats of two great religions and cultures, and that the bonding between the two should increase in view of both falling in the country’s North-east.
“Kamrupa – as Assam was known in the days of yore – is the land of Goddess Kamakhya and a major pilgrimage centre. Sikkim too has been at the forefront of Buddhist culture since ages. Sikkim happens to be the little brother for the seven sisters of the North-east, and I feel both can gain by way of enhanced interaction and exchange in the fields of culture, tourism, education, and trade and commerce,” he said.
Recollecting his association with Assam, the Governor said that he had fond memories of Guwahati as a sleepy town during the early 1970s when he was a Deputy Commissioner there.
“I have a long association with Assam which dates back to the days when I was a Deputy Commissioner in Guwahati. From a sleepy town it has now grown into the largest metropolis of the North-east,” he said.
Earlier, Tilu Gurung, Minister for Buildings and Housing, Sikkim, felicitated the Governor.
D Pradhan, Secretary, Buildings and Housing Department, Sikkim, gave an account of the guest house and its annexe building constructed at a cost of Rs 4.66 crore. The aesthetically built multi-storey guest house, which is a blend of traditional Sikkimese architecture and modern engineering, has a total space of 6,882 sq ft, with a ground floor area of 2,380 sq ft.