GUWAHATI: In a significant development, Chandra Mohan Patowary, the Environment and Forest Minister of Assam revealed on Monday the state government's intention to streamline regulations, facilitating water sports and tourism-related activities at Deepor Beel, a renowned freshwater lake celebrated for its rich biodiversity. The state cabinet is poised to make a decision on this matter in the near future, as announced by Minister Patowary during the closing ceremony of 'The Rising Sun Water Fest – Revisiting Saraighat,' a four-day event held at Deepor Beel, located approximately 10 km from the state capital.
Patowary expressed the government's commitment to explore avenues that would enhance tourism in the region, indicating a willingness to simplify existing rules without the necessity for rigorous environmental clearances. Addressing reporters, he acknowledged occasional objections from the state forest department to certain events in Deepor Beel and emphasized the need to modify rules for facilitating tourism-related activities, thereby unlocking the full tourism potential of the freshwater lake.
The minister highlighted the historical significance of Deepor Beel, noting its proximity to the site of the Battle of Saraighat in 1671. The lake served as the venue for 'The Rising Sun Water Fest,' an event organized collaboratively by the state government and the Army to pay homage to the historic battle, where Ahom forces, led by the revered General Lachit Borphukan, achieved a decisive victory over the Mughals.
Deepor Beel, known for its scenic beauty and ecological importance, was previously the site of the fest's inaugural edition at Umiam Lake in Meghalaya last year. Lt Gen R P Kalita, General Officer Commanding in Chief, Eastern Command, lauded the event during the closing ceremony, stating that it effectively showcased the tourism potential of Deepor Beel.
The government's proactive stance in simplifying rules aligns with its vision to promote tourism and leverage the historical and ecological significance of Deepor Beel. By fostering a favorable environment for water sports and related activities, Assam aims to attract more visitors while ensuring the sustainable development of this unique freshwater ecosystem.