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Monday, April 11, 2016, Chaitra 28, 1422 BS, Rajab 3, 1437 Hijri

Tourists? flow thru Banglabandha check post rises, despite problems
Published :Monday, 11 April, 2016,  Time : 12:00 AM  View Count : 19

PANCHAGARH, Apr 10: Despite several problems, tourists' movement through Banglabandha-Phulbari immigration check post has risen as at least 774 such people have made their journey through the point in the last one and a half months of its opening.
Earlier, immigration service through Banglabandha-Phulbari land port in Tentulia upazila of Panchagarh district was launched on February 18.
Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan and State Minister for External Affairs of India Vijay Kumar Singh inaugurated the immigration service.
A 32-member Bangladesh delegation led by Ashraful Alam Patwari, president of Panchagarh Chamber of Commerce and Industries, went to India through the check post on the opening day.
Sources at Banglabandha immigration check-post, said some 774 tourists have so far traveled through the land port.
Of them, 123 people traveled in both countries in February and 651 people in March.
Despite several problems and complexities, including difficulties in getting visas, money exchange and baggage clearance and there not being the facility to carry luggage 200 metres inside the check post, the number of tourists travelling through this point is increasing day by day.
Besides, people using the check post fall victim to harassment in different ways as there is no direct transport link from Dhaka to Banglabandha and from Banglabandha to Dinajpur and Rangpur.
However, there is no mobile operator's network, causing immense suffering to the tourists, customs immigration officials and local people.
The tourists have demanded the higher authorities' intervention in solving the problem.
Bangladeshi tourists can travel to different places of India, including Siliguri, Darjeeling, Asam, Mizoram, Tripura, Nagaland, Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya and Kolkata through the Banglabandha-Phulbari immigration check post while the Indian tourists can visit many parts of the country, including Cox's Bazar, Kuakata, Rangamati, Bandarban and Sylhet districts.
Besides, both Bangladesh and India will be benefited by the land port as the distance from Banglabandha-Phulbari land port to Siliguri is only eight kilometers while Jalpaiguri city is ten kilometers away from the land port.    ?UNB

Editor : Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury
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