Tuesday, 23 April, 2024

Rafting business resumes in Bagmati Province


By Our Correspondent
Chitwan, Mar. 26: The rafting business, which had been closed for two years, has resumed after the Holi festival.
The business started in the area directly affected by the coronavirus pandemic after domestic tourists started thronging for rafting after Holi.
Nani Babu Thapa, former president of Nepal Association of Nada Rafting, said, "The business, which remained closed for two years, has resumed operations this week. There is hope that it will continue."

According to him, domestic tourists have started rafting on the rivers including Bhotekoshi, Trishuli, Kaligandaki and Sunkoshi. More than 30 businessmen have fled the area soon after the closure of the business.
Thapa said, "We are collecting the details of how many businessmen have left. There are many who have closed their business." He said the rafting business was in the doldrums as the government failed to come up with programmes to promote the business and increase the number of tourists.

Now that the business is in operation, 300 people have started rafting daily. Thapa informed that all of them were domestic tourists.
Kamal Thakuri, a rafting business operator in Fisling, Chitwan, said, "After two years of shutdown, the boats came to operation four days ago." We have been bringing domestic tourists from Kathmandu to attract international tourists, he said, adding that the government should work for the promotion and development of rafting sector.

Thakuri, who has been in the rafting business since 2045 BS, said, "It was possible to drink water directly from the Trisuli River then. Now the river is polluted due to crusher industry and sand extraction." He said that the rafting business would have been better off if the water pollution was controlled. According to Thakuri, the number of people coming for rafting shots up on public holidays.

Director of Muglin Car and Rafting Service, Binod Vagdas, said that more than a dozen businessmen had been operating rafting on the river and that the rafting business had been in operation since its inception and the public should be made aware of its importance.

According to the businessmen, the package has been provided for those who come for rafting. Car rental, three hours of rafting and food are provided from Rs. 1800 to 2400 per person. He said that the service fee would increase if they stayed overnight. Businessmen have been conducting rafting trips from Jogimara to the lower reaches of Muglin at a distance of 20 km.