A village along the Indo-Nepal border that is dominated by the Tharu tribe, will be developed as a tourist destination under the Uttar Pradesh government’s One District, One Eco Tourism Spot scheme.
Elaborating more on this, Bahraich Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) stated that as per the scheme, eco-tourism centres are developed in districts and forest divisions to lure tourists. He added that Katarniaghat Forest Division already has an operational eco-tourism centre, but there was no such place in Bahraich. That’s one of the major reasons why the Tharu tribe dominated Balaigaon village, along the Indo-Nepal border, has been selected for it.
He also added that as the spot is devoid of any trees in a particular zone, there will be no need of cutting trees to develop tourism facilities. The picturesque forest area is home to leopards, hyena, tigers, and wild boars, he added.
The DFO emphasised that since the Tharu tribals still maintained their cultural practices and traditions, the primary focus of developing the spot would be to attract Nepalese tourists.
As per the forest policy to attract tourists, roads, accommodation options, and other necessary facilities are being developed, he stated. Tourist park and nature walk track will also be developed in the green belt, and ponds in the area will be also developed to attract Siberian birds
During the first phase, the government would spend INR 2 crore on the project. Reportedly, the eco-tourism facility will feature a 10-km long safari track, four specially designed vehicles equipped with trained drivers and guides for jungle safari, and four Tharu huts.
There will be a Tharu canteen too that will serve traditional food to tourists. Reports have it that UP Eco Tourism Corporation will operate the tourist destination through online bookings.