SHILLONG, Jan 10: Communication is one important aspect for tourism sector to grow in any state and with the Meghalaya government raising the stakes to turn the state into a tourism hub, a lot more remains to be done especially in improving the approach roads to various sites of tourist interest.
The state is blessed with places of tourist attraction and is coming up like never before, however the bad condition of approach roads to the various tourist destinations is making many tourists grumble.
“It’s lovely to be here and I love to visit Cherra. I just hope the roads would improve a little,” said Vijay Gupta from Uttar Pradesh currently on a vacation in the city.
Ahmed Sohail from Goa laughingly said, “Yes good roads are always an added bonus for travellers like us and our backs who have been on the road for hours.
Managed and well maintained by the State Forest Department, Thangkharang Park park on Mawsmai - Shella Road which is about 8 kms from Sohra is a popular tourist spot blessed with many rare and exotic orchids and some rare species of plants endemic to the area and a panoramic view of the plains of Bangladesh has been a major tourist attraction. However, the approach road to the park is in a bad shape with most of the upper layer either eroded or washed off and the reasons could vary from rainfall to lack of attention for maintenance.
“Convergence of all the aligned departments from tourism to PWD and PHE is required to push the tourism sector forward,” said Parliamentary Secretary, Tourism, Arts & Culture, Kennedy Cornelius Khyriem further adding that, “Tourism sector cannot stand alone”.
Admitting that such lapses work as a drawback for the tourism sector, Khyriem said that either he or his officials will take immediate note and inspect the area.
He further informed that in line with the Chief Minister’s move to turn the state into a tourism hub, various initiatives have been taken by the department and one such initiative is the Rongmesek village in Ri-Bhoi where around Rs 90 lakhs was invested in upgrading the infrastructure besides beautification and road.
“There is a lake and a view point at Rongmesek and we have made a boat house and a lodge,” he informed.
Informing about more such initiatives being carried out a sites with viable tourism potential, Khyriem said that government has been working on another Shadryngi waterfall in Jaintia Hills.