Tourists and locals have urged the authorities to modernize the tourist spot
Khanika, a tourist centre in Bakshiganj upazila of Jamalpur district, is losing tourists because of its current mismanagement.
The picturesque centre, which has been attracting people from across the country for several years, is located in a village called Lauchapra, Jamalpur.
It borders on India's Meghalaya state, and is surrounded by beautiful hills and forest land. However, due to serious mismanagement and a lack of tourist-friendly facilities—such as the absence of potable water, poor infrastructure, and safety issues—the spot is missing out on a lot of potential tourists.
The people who have visited the area to escape from their busy and hectic lives are not likely returning with fond memories of their stay.
According to the locals, the Jamalpur District Council made this place a picnic spot and entertainment center in 1996 and named it "Kahnika Oboshor Binodon Kendro".
The tourist spot consists of: a two-story rest house of VIP quality, three small-scale general rest houses, 150 sixty-feet-high watchtowers for sightseeing, reinforced stairs for climbing hills, a park for children, and an artificial lake with sufficient parking spaces.
Every year, the district council earns Tk12-15 lakhs in revenue from this tourist centre.
Despite having such poor facilities and management, people from all walks of life visit Khanika just for its natural beauty.
Thus the locals and holiday-makers have urged the authorities concerned to modernize the Khanika tourist spot so that people from across the country can come and see the mesmerizing beauty of Lauchapra, Jamalpur.
Addressing the issue, Jamalpur District Council Chief Executive Officer Khandaker Mohammad Abdullah Al Mahmud said: "We have a project worth Tk300 crore for the modernization of the tourist centre. We will dredge the lake and install high-quality pumps, in order to ensure a constant flow of fresh, potable water.
"After this project is implemented, Khanika will become a modern and tourist-friendly tourist centre and people from all parts of Bangladesh will be able to travel to here and experience the beauty of this place."
The locals believe that if the project is implemented properly and finished on time, then it will have a great positive impact on Lauchapra's economic growth. Both the tourists and the local people will benefit from this project, locals say.