Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister Faruk Khan on Friday said the government will not do anything that might have adverse effects on the ecology of the Sundarbans, the world’s largest mangrove forest.
“We need electricity and at the same time we need to protect our environment. We won’t do anything harming the Sundarbans,” Khan told reporters at Dhaka University’s TSC after a rally brought out to celebrate the World Tourism Day-2013.
Responding to a query, the minister said the government assesses environmental aspects before taking any development project. “The power plant will be set up far from the Sundarbans and the most modern technology will be used there.”
He said they love Bangladesh and the government has assessed the things scientifically so that the environment can be protected.
Citing an example how each person harms to environment, he said, “The environment will be affected to some extent for people.”
Amid the growing demand for its cancellation, the government on Thursday said some individuals and organisations are misleading people through propaganda against the proposed 1320-MM coal-fired Rampal thermal power plant to be built near the Sundarbans.
Faruk Khan said the tourism industry is performing better in recent years with the growing number of domestic and international tourists.
“The number of tourists was 2-2.5 lakh a few years back but it was 5.88 lakh last year…we earned Tk 60-65 million earlier but the earnings stood at Tk 100.93 million in 2012-2013,” he added.
Earlier in the morning, a colorful rally, led by the tourism minister, was brought out from Ramna Park which ended at the TSC. The World Tourism Day is being observed in the country today as elsewhere across the globe.
Tour Operators Association of Bangladesh, Aviation and Tourism Journalists Forum, Bangladesh, Association of Travel Agents of Bangladesh, Ruposhi Bangla Hotel, Regency Dhaka, American International University, Bangladesh, Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation, Bangladesh Tourism Board and Bangladesh Kite Foundation, among others, took part in the rally.
This year’s theme of the day is: ‘Tourism and Water: Protecting our Common Future’.
Bangladesh Tourism Board (BTB), Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation (BPC), various tour operators and other organisations have chalked out elaborate programmes to observe the day.