Koraput district would have been the prime tourist destination of Odisha if only the government had come out of the brackets of the “golden triangle” of Bhubaneswar- PuriKonark, remarked Gadadhar Parida, former district collector of Koraput. He was speaking at a seminar on “potential of Koraput region as a tourist destination” organised by INTACH, Koraput chapter at Jeypore on the occasion of celebrating World Tourism Day on Tuesday.

The poor infrastructure and lack of communication to the interior pockets of the state is similar to inviting a guest to the house and keeping the house untidy so that he goes back without staying even for a minute, noted Parida. He expressed his surprise over the tourism department giving its own building on lease to a private party to make a hotel at Koraput while struggling hard to find a place for itself in the district headquarters. This is one of the burning examples of the lack of sincerity on the part of the government to tap the tourism potential of Koraput region, he said. Tourism is not an industr, it&’s a way of life said Paresh Rath, researcher on tribal way of life while giving a presentation on the potential of Koraput. Koraput is rich in its biodiversity embedded with variation of cultural heritage, ancient architectural marvel , historical monuments and festivals.

Even with less than a fraction of it, other states have reaped huge benefit by promoting tourism, he observed. Papers were presented on eco tourism in Koraput and potential of tourism in Koraput region with historical monuments by Dr.Jagabandhu Samal and Sriranga Nayak respectively. Md.Azfar, Sub-Collector , Koraput was the chief guest while Dr P C Mahapatra, district convener of INTACH presided over the meeting. Members of INTACH and people from Koraput and Jeypore joined the celebration.