GUWAHATI, Feb 27 � Opening of transit routes through Bangladesh will give a major boost to the economy of the entire North East region and the prices of essential commodities will also come down because of reduction of cost of transportation, observed Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar.
Talking to The Assam Tribune, Sarkar said that efforts should be made by the Government of India for road, rail and waterways connectivity through Bangladesh for the benefit of the entire North East region. He pointed out that both India and Bangladesh have already agreed on principle the need for opening the transit routes through Bangladesh and to augment trade and commerce with the neighbouring country. But the need of the hour is to implement the decisions taken on the ground as quickly as possible, he added.
Sarkar expressed the view that opening of the transit routes through Bangladesh would reduce the distance to the region. Giving an example of his own State, he said that after the division of the country, Tripura is surrounded by Bangladesh on three sides. Before the division of the country, the distance between Agartala to Kolkata was only 350 kilometres through Dhaka and now the distance is more than 1600 kilometres. He said that the landlocked Tripura and other parts of the North East region would get a major boost if the transit routes through Bangladesh are reopened.
The Tripura Chief Minister said that the common people of the North East region would get a big relief if the transit routes through Bangladesh are reopened as the cost of transportation of the essential commodities would come down, which would help in bringing down the prices.
Sarkar pointed out that there is every potential of giving a boost to tourism in the region as there is possibility of preparing a tourism package involving the North East region and Bangladesh. The Government of India should examine the feasibility of doing so, he added.