Sustained blockades and strikes have hit Kuakata’s tourism industry. Since the beginning of the tourist season, the traders are disoriented as there are no tourists. Hotel-motel workers in the face of retrenchment.
Mermaid Kuakata is a year-round attraction for tourists. But here the main tourist season begins with the arrival of winter. Even if it is winter, tourists are not coming like that. Kuakata remains empty of tourists except Friday and Saturday due to continuous strike and blockade.
The hotel-motel traders as well as the petty traders on the beach are now spending idle time. Layoffs have begun in hotels and motels.
Motaleb Sharif, general secretary of Kuakata Hotel Motel Owners Association, says, ‘Hotel-motel business has reached zero. Due to this, it is not possible to pay the salary of employees, electricity bills here. Many have laid off or furloughed employees.
The floating merchants of the beach are in trouble due to lack of income for a long time. Now many people are thinking of changing profession. They say business is not going well in the shop now. There is no sale like before. Running a family is difficult.
The Upazila Nirbahi Officer informed about the discussion with the higher authorities to help the victims. Kalapara Upazila Nirbahi Officer Jahangir Hossain said, ‘We hope that Kuakata will become a world-class tourist spot as a result of the government’s action. Tourists will come there. The affected traders will be able to compensate the loss.
Kuakata tourism officials feel that it will be difficult to turn around if the political unrest is prolonged.