The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is likely to provide a Rs 2,100 crore loan to the Tripura government for the development of urban areas and tourism in the northeastern state that borders Bangladesh, officials said here on Tuesday.
According to Tripura's Urban Development and Tourism Department Secretary Gitte Kirankumar Dinkarrao, of the Rs 2,100 crore expected to be provided by the ADB as loan, Rs 1600 crore will be for urban development and Rs 500 crore for the tourism sector.
"Under the loan arrangement, initially ADB would provide Rs 40 crore for engagement of project design and management consultants for urban and tourism sectors. Once the projects are prepared, ADB would provide Rs 1,600 crore for development works in urban areas and Rs 500 crore in tourism sector over the next three years," Dinkarrao told IANS.
The senior IAS officer said that in the urban sector, all 20 urban local bodies in Tripura would be covered and in the tourism sector, all tourism destinations, roads leading to them and tourist facilities would be covered.
The Tripura Government has signed the loan agreement with the ADB in New Delhi on Friday.
The state's Resident Commissioner in Delhi Chaitanya Murti signed the "Loan Negotiation documents of Project Readiness Finance" with ADB's Country Director Takeo Kanishi in the presence of Additional Secretary to the Economic Affairs Department of the Union Finance Ministry C. S. Mohapatra.
Dinkarrao said that within next 6-7 months, the Detailed Project Reports (DPRs) would be ready and for this purpose two renowned consultants are being engaged.
"The ADB fund would be utilised to those areas where no projects not yet undertaken. Development of roads, infrastructures developments for water supply, sanitations, electricity and other required basic facilities would be the focus areas of the ADB funded projects," he said.
Meanwhile, a senior official of the Tripura Tourism Department said that under the centrally sponsored "Swadesh Darshan" scheme, Tripura has received around Rs 164 crore in two phases for the development of the 20 tourism destinations in the state.
"The Tripura government has recently sent a Rs 40 crore project to the Union Tourism Ministry to sanction funds under the PRASHAD scheme for an all round development of the famous 520-year-old Tripura Sundari Temple in southern Tripura's Udaipur (60 kilometre south of state capital Agartala)," the official told IANS, refusing to be identified.
The Union Tourism Ministry under the schemes -- Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual, Heritage Augmentation Drive (PRASHAD) and Integrated Development of Theme Based Tourist Circuit in the Country, Swadesh Darshan (SD) -- provides financial assistance for infrastructure development and beautification of tourist spots in various states and union territories.
Maharaja (king) of Tripura Dhanya Manikya (1463 to 1515) built the Tripura Sundari Temple in 1501. It is one of the 51 Shakti Peethas (holy sites) in the country.
After the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government assumed office in Tripura in March 2018, the Mata Tripura Sundari Temple Development Committee was replaced by the board of trustees named Mata Tripura Sundari Temple Trust. Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb is the Chairman of the 10-member trust.