Flood Damage Restoration

Catamarans Brahmani and Mahanadi Handed Over

The Forest department of the Odisha government has finally taken the decisive step to hand over two catamarans named Brahmani and Mahanadi. These two boats are going to carry passengers now for the amusement trip to the Bhitarkanika National Park through its water bodies. Odisha has a large heritage of tourism and is very much popular with Puri where the famous temple of Lord Jagannath is located. But many people are unaware of the fact that there are many more tourist spots to explore except the religious ones. Bhitarkanika is such a place where you can get the warmth of nature on its lap.

The forest department of Odisha had three such catamarans which were left unused and were getting rusts on their parts. This is why they have decided to hand over two of them to the tourism department so that they can utilize them properly. They were brought from Goa in the year 2014 for around a sum of 4 crores. But due to a lack of trained crew members, they had to keep their operations suspended. They used to outsource such crew members from Samudra Shipyards Private Limited for the continuation of the operations. Now finally they have decided to hand them over to the tourism department of the state.

Both the boats have a capacity to carry 20 passengers along with advanced safety features. J.D Pati, the DFO of Bhitarkanika has mentioned that these catamarans are well equipped to provide safety to the borders during the tour through the mangrove forests of the area containing saltwater crocodiles. The tourists will be able to enjoy the natural scenic beauty of the place from the well-furnished bedrooms or sitting comfortably at the balconies. The boats also contain a kitchen, dining hall, and well-equipped bathrooms. The arrangements will definitely remind you about a miniature version of a floating hotel. The most important thing in this regard is both the catamarans are having solar panels as their power source so that they don’t damage the natural environment of the jungle with the toxic smoke of a generator or its sound.

Catamarans have long been popular in places like Goa and are increasingly being seen up and down the Indian Coast, with some spectacular boats mooring up in and around Mumbai and Kochi, and setting sail for the Maldives islands, with over 1000 different islands to sail around.  The growing industry is attracting increasing attention from European and global Charter Company Yacht and Catamaran operators, who see the market as an exciting opportunity.  The likes of Dream Yacht Charter, Navigare and Sunsail, to name but three, all have fleets in the Indian Ocean, and brokers such as PlainSailing.com or GlobeSailor.com are seeing the destinations become more and more trendy as the years go on, with sailors increasingly looking for more adventurous waters to sail in, having tired with the waters around Croatia and Greece.

According to the authorities, Bhitorkonika is such a place that will definitely attract tourists at a glance. The greenery of the national park is enough to soothe the tired mind and brain. The heart-warming sounds of the birds in the morning along with the different kinds of sounds of different animals during the night will make your day a beautiful experience. For the people who love photography, this place is the best to nurture their hobby. The authorities of the Bhitarkanika national park are trying to keep the place away from every kind of pollution. Therefore they are trying to adopt such ways that will not cause any kind of air, water, or noise pollution. They are trying to make a balance between the tourism industry and the natural environment of the park. The authorities are always concerned about the flora and fauna of the park to protect them.

On of the struggles of allowing sailing into the country (and specifically the seas) is the impact that such tourism will have on the environment – not limited to just the wildlife such as the dolphins, fish and birds that live off the waters, but also the plants and wild animals that live in and around the marinas, which are fast being destroyed to make way for modern marinas, with all of the infrastructure that goes with it – swimming pools, hotel complexes, shopping malls and other entertainment venues are all being added to the harbours that were previously shared with the wildlife, in a bid to attract rich tourists to the area.  Regulations are going through the Indian government currently to try and counter-act this, but it remains to be seen how effective these controls will be.

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Christophe Rude

Christophe Rude

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