Homestay status to stay

The National Green Tribunal has accepted the petition filed by homestay owners of Buxa Tiger Reserve - who want their accommodations to remain open - and the request would be heard on November 22.

By OUR CORRESPONDENT in Alipurduar
  • Published 14.10.17
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A homestay in Buxa

Alipurduar, Oct. 13: The National Green Tribunal has accepted the petition filed by homestay owners of Buxa Tiger Reserve - who want their accommodations to remain open - and the request would be heard on November 22.

The tribunal, however, said that status quo should be maintained in the area till the petition is heard, sources informed. As a result, tourists will not be able to stay in these accommodations during Diwali holidays, as almost all homestays are close.

Subhash Dutta, whose petition led to the tribunal order asking all accommodations in BTR to close down, said over phone: "My petition was against those lodges, hotels and resorts, which had violated rules and acts and were set up in BTR. I do not have any objection if homestays (with two-three rooms) operate in the BTR. He also confirmed that the court will hear the petition of the homestay owners on November 22."

"Today, the tribunal wanted to know the status of accommodations in the BTR. The state forest department has served notices to all such accommodations which have come up in other forests of north Bengal like the Gorumara National Park and Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary. The tribunal also said the state should ensure that all such facilities remain close till further order, he added."

Tamal Goswami, one of the stakeholders of the tourism industry in Alipurduar district, said the homestays and all those associated with these accommodations will face loss during the Diwali season.