BHUBANESWAR: BJD Rajya Sabha member Subhash Chandra Singh on Monday requested the Centre to develop five lighthouses in the State under Sagarmala project as these projects hold immense potential for tourism development.
Participating in a debate on Marine Aids to Navigation Bill-2021 in Rajya Sabha, Singh said as the Union Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways seeks to develop 65 lighthouses across the country on public-private-partnership mode, Odisha’s five lighthouses present huge potential for tourism.
The Bill when passed will repeal the Lighthouse Act, 1927 and incorporate the global best practices, technological development and India’s international obligation in the field of marine navigation. Lok Sabha had the passed Bill on March 22.
The five lighthouses, which Singh proposed to be developed under the scheme are, False Point island lighthouse off Kendrapara coast, Paradip lighthouse, lighthouse at Gopalpur, Chandrabhaga lighthouse and Puri lighthouse.
The False Point island lighthouse is a British era, 129 feet massive minaret-like structure of red-white bands with a huge embossed star.
The 180-year functional tower, which continues to guide ships, is visible from quite a distance from the Bay of Bengal. Singh said its location close to massive mangrove vegetation infested with crocodiles makes it an adventurous tourist place on the eastern coast.
He said, according to light house researcher ICR Prasad, the False Point is the oldest working lighthouse in India.
Paradip lighthouse is another imposing structure and holds tourism potential because of its proximity to the port town, Cuttack and Bhubaneswar.
Singh said the 150-old tower at Gopalpur in Ganjam district used to assist ships sailing between Rangoon and Coromandel coast ports and is already a tourist place.
The Chilika Lake and Gopalpur beach will be added attractions if it is developed as a place of tourist interest, he added.
Besides, Chandrabhaga lighthouse, 10 km from Konark temple, offers a breathtaking view of the sea and its height enables tourists to get a panoramic view of the town. Puri lighthouse, four km from Shree Jagannath temple, is also a tourist place.