Agartala: The bordering Vidyasagar Gram Panchayat West Tripura has received the Best Rural Tourism Village award along with 34 others in the country for the promotion and preservation of their cultural heritage and sustainable development through tourism.
Joint Director of Tripura Tourism Jayanta Debbarma and Panchayat Member Manna Roy received the award in the Bronze category with 19 others on Wednesday in New Delhi from Ajay Bhatt, Minister of State of Tourism and Defence, in the mega event organized on the occasion of World Tourism Day.
Tourism Minister Sushanta Choudhury said on Thursday that Vidyasagar village has started the journey towards rural tourism through bamboo-based livelihood, housing, and tourism infrastructure completely on private initiative by a few enterprising entrepreneurs in 2017, and over the last five years it transformed the economic landscape of the village and became popular as “Bash Gram” (bamboo village).
“Bash Gram has got space in the Prime Minister’s Mann Ki Baat where the PM applauded the initiative of nature-based life and tourism. Hundreds of people from different parts of the country and abroad have been visiting Bash Gram, about 50 kilometres north of the city, and witnessing the bamboo-based livelihood activities of the villagers,” Choudhury stated.
Vidyasagar village has been accredited as one of the Best Tourism Villages of India in 2023. Out of a total of 795 applications received from 31 States and Union Territories, it stood out as a shining example of excellence in rural tourism, exemplifying the nine pillars of the Best Tourism Village Competition, said Secretary Tourism U K Chakma.
The event is part of the global launch of Travel for Life, organised by the Ministry of Tourism in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, the United Nations World Tourism Organization, and the United Nations Environment Program, which acknowledged the outstanding contributions of villages.
Travel for Life is targeted to promote sustainable economic development, encourage sustainable consumption and production, sustainable cities and communities, responsible consumption and production, climate action, and life below water.
Addressing the gathering of World Tourism Day at Ujjayanta Palace, Chief Minister Manik Saha said that his government has taken various steps to boost the tourism industry, and Indian cricket maestro Sourav Ganguly has been promoting Tripura tourism as a brand ambassador.
The Tripura government will spend Rs 1000 crore over the next five years for tourism infrastructure development.