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Tourism in northern region left uncared for

Mohasthangarh, Nabaratna and Kantaji temple need recognition as world heritage site

OUR CORRESPONDENT | November 21, 2023 00:00:00

Several monuments used by famous poet Rabindranath Tagore during his regime. The photo was taken from Rabindra Kachharibari in Shahzadpur upazila of Sirajganj district — FE Photo

BOGURA, Nov 20: Despite huge prospects, tourism sector in the northern region especially in Bogura, Sirajganj, Rajshahi and Natore has been facing manifold problem due to lack of proper initiatives. The sector remains neglected for long.

Tourism of the northern region is not getting pace like other places of the country.Insiders said every year about 43 percent of the tourists from abroad choose the northern region for their trips.

But most of them suffer from different disadvantages due to lack of necessary patronization of the authorities concerned. It makes the tourists discouraged and turns them away from this region. Consequently, the government is being deprived of earning huge revenue.

Sources said about 5 million tourists visit different attractive spots of the northern region including Mohasthangarh in Bogura, Paharpur in Naogaon, Rajbari in Natore and Rajshahi, TajhatZamindarbari in Rangpur and RabindraKuthibari in Sirajganjeach year. Most of them come from abroad. Centring the tourist spots, many business establishments including hotels and restaurants have been set up in the region. Those have become source of income for many entrepreneurs and many unemployed youths.

According to the information of Archeological Department in Bogura, there are at least 158 historical spots in two divisionsRajshahi and Rangpur of the northern region. Of them, UttaraGanobhaban and Rajbari in Natore, Jorh Bangla temple in Pabna, RabindraKachharibari in Shahzadpur, Handial mosque in Tarash and Nabaratna temple in Hatikumrul of Sirajganj, Paharpur and Kusumba mosque in Naogaon, Kantaji temple in Dinajpur, Bagha mosque and Rajbari in Rajshahi, antiquity of Kansat and Shibganj and Gour monuments in Chapainawabganj are significant. Thousands of visitors crowd in the spots every day. Most of the spots are open for visitors, while Tk 10 is realized from each local visitor and Tk 100 from each foreign visitors as entrance fee for visiting the museums. Not only antiquity, the livelihoods and diversity of the indigenous community in the northern region attract foreigners seriously. But, the foreign visitors face difficulties due to poor communication and lack of international standard hotel-motel facilities.

If international standard hotels and motels are established in the region besides improving communication and security measures, it will be possible to earn millions of taka revenue from this sector, relevant sources said.

Several tour agencies said Cox's Bazar, Sundarbans and Sylhet get highly priority as tourist spots. But, northern region is the main target to the foreign tourists due to several historical and archeological monuments. This is why, preservation of the archeological monuments in the region is a must to expand the tourism industry of the country.

Some tourist spots including Mohasthangarh, Nabaratna and Kantaji temple need recognition as world heritage site. If the government pays attention in this regard, the region may turn into a potential tourist spot, they said.

Naheed Sultana, Regional Director of Archeological Department in Bogura (Rajshahi and Rangpur divisional office) told The Financial Express that huge development was done recently centringMohasthangarh museum after acquiring six acres of land. Besides, steps have been taken to expand tourism of 17 monument sites in the region, she said. If the government allocates sufficient funds to protect and develop the historical and ancient sites, the northern region may turn into a potential tourist zone in the country shortly, she added.

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