Kolkata: Training guns at the central government TMC MP Sudip Banerjee on Monday said that West Bengal is no more a ‘communist’ state and questioned the central government’s apathy to allot fund for developing religious and spiritual tourism in the state.
He raised the issue in Parliament when tourism minister Mahesh Sharma was responding to supplementaries on religious and spiritual tourism and development of thematic circuits to attract more tourists.
Responding to the question, Sharma said funds are released based on the detailed project reports and utilisation certificates submitted by respective state governments and asked the TMC member to ensure that the same are submitted to the Centre on time.
Bandhopadhyay wanted Sharma to include the Belur Math and certain other sites in the religious and spiritual circuit and strengthened his case saying the Prime Minister too had visited the ‘math’ recently.
In his written response, Sharma said the tourism ministry has launched ‘Swadesh Darshan’ scheme for integrated development of theme-based circuits and 12 thematic circuits have been identified including four religious/spiritual circuits — Buddhist circuit, Krishna circuit, Spiritual circuit and Ramayana circuit.
He said the government also planned to develop a ‘Ram Van Gaman path’ from Nepal to Sri Lanka.