86% tourists satisfied with services of Tourist Police in Bangladesh: Study

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News Desk

A research by Bangladesh Centre for Advanced Studies (BCAS) shows that around 86% tourists are satisfied with the services of tourist police while 39% tourists say the tourist police are playing good role in showcasing heritages in Bangladesh.

The findings were disseminated at a validation workshop on “Role of Tourist Police to Enhance Economic Prospect and showcasing Heritage of Bangladesh” on Wednesday in Dhaka, said a press release.

The study also shows that tourism sector contributes around 3.02% to Bangladesh’s GDP and this sector has good potential to contribute more to national economy and tourist police can play good role in this context.

The event was chaired by Khandaker Mainuddin, chairman of BCAS, the workshop was graced by prof. Dr. Khondoker Bazlul Haque, supernumerary Professor, Department of International Business, Dhaka University as chief guest and Mr. Jabed Ahmed, former Chief Executive Officer & Additional Secretary (PLR) as special guest.

The workshop was also attended by the researchers, academicians, journalists and representatives of concerned govt. department and offices including Department of Archaeology and Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA).

Mr. Monowarul Islam, Study coordinator and senior researcher of BCAS explained the study background. He mentioned that a number of ministries and departments are directly and indirectly engaged in tourism industries. Tourist police was formed in 2013 for the betterment of tourism industries.

BCAS has been commission by Tourist Police Headquarter to conduct this study on the role of tourist police towards the development of tourism industries. As part of the study BCAS has conducted field work in six tourist sites namely Sreemongal (Sylhet), Bandarban, Cox’sbazar, Saintmartin (Cox’sbazar), Bagerhat and Mongla (Bagerhat).

The study has three general objectives namely: Identifying role of tourist police towards: 1)economic prosperity; 2)showcasing heritage and, 3) contribution to tourism value chain. The BCAS study team in collaboration with tourist police collected data through questionnaire survey from around 800 tourist, expert opinions through Key Informant Interview (KII and ) and significant cases through case studies.

Dr. Md Anowar Hossain Bhuiyan, deputy project team leader & assistant professor and head of tourism and hospitality management of National University Bangladesh, presented the study findings. He mentioned that tourism has immense potential to contribute to national economic prosperity. Our tourist spots host around twenty million tourists annually. Safe accommodation and security are the key to the improvement of tourism industries.

Tourists have given emphasis on the increase of role and responsibilities of tourists for the development of tourism industries. The study findings have also identified some key role and responsibilities of tourist police which include, environment and biodiversity conservation, waste management at tourist spots, increase presence of tourist police at tourist spots, exploring new tourist sites and products and ensure medical services for tourists. So far around 86% tourists are satisfied with the services of tourist police while 39% tourists opined that the tourist police are playing good role in showcasing heritages.

A number of recommendations have been made from the workshop on the capacity and skill development of tourist police which are: enhance coordination among concerned ministries, department and other stakeholders to increase and specify roles and responsibilities of tourist police, training for tourist police on cultural and historical heritages, facilitate awareness campaign among local and host communities about foreign tourists, incorporating the issues of tourist police in existing polices, and ensure presence of rescue team in sea beach and other tourist spots.

Special guest highlighted three major initiatives of the government regarding the development of tourism industries which include, 1) formation of tourism board in 2010, 2) formation of tourist police in 2013, and 3) Undertaking initiative for developing tourism master plan.

Chief Guest mentioned that Service sector including tourism has good potential to contribute to national economy.