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Eco-tourism plan for Sunderbans

Our Bureau

KOLKATA, Aug. 5

THE West Bengal Government has drawn up an ambitious eco-tourism project to promote the bio-diversity of the Sunderbans, the Chief Minister, Mr Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, has said. The project will be backed by the United Nations Development Programme.

The project will be part of the State's new thrust on tourism, directed partly towards niche segments. The Sunderbans forests, well-known for mangroves and home to the Royal Bengal Tiger, are expected to fit the bill adequately.

The latest policy will source assistance from external sources, and roping in the corporate sector is not ruled out.

The State, Mr Bhattacharjee said, will back tourism ventures mooted by corporates.

He was speaking at the inauguration of the Institute for International Management & Technology (IIMT) at Raichak near Kolkata on Sunday.

"We need private participation in the hospitality sector in the State. Groups like ITC and Hyatt are already playing a key role in this area, and there is enough scope for others,'' the Chief Minister said. West Bengal, he added, has a large pool of talent suited to the services sector, including hospitality.

IIMT was set up in collaboration with Oxford Brookes University of the UK.

The school, which will be the university's second campus in India, will offer a B.Sc. in hotel management. The first campus in Gurgaon is supported by Radisson Hotels (a subsidiary of Carlson Hospitality of the US).

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Eco-tourism plan for Sunderbans


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