• Lieutenant Colonel Md Ehsanul Kabir, afwc, psc, Sigs NDC




Ecotourism provides opportunities for tourists to experience wonderful nature and local culture. At the same time, it generates income to local communities living in remote areas. With hills, valleys, forests, lakes and rivers, Bangladesh provides many ideal sites for ecotourism, though it is still a relatively new form of tourism in Bangladesh. Due to lack of integrated planning and infrastructure development, ecotourism projects could not be implemented. However, this can be developed in potential sites through proper planning and integrating Bangladesh Army with other stake holders. As such this study is undertaken and the objectives of this study is to examine the extent and nature of ecotourism in Bangladesh, to identify the role of Bangladesh Army in promoting ecotourism by focusing on the CHT and to  furnish some policy framework and future recommendations. The study is conducted based on secondary sources, interviews to key informants, limited field visits, survey, personal observations and  own analysis. The ecotourism implementation criteria are neither difficult nor very expensive. Thus, Bangladesh can implement ecotourism projects in untouched natural areas of the CHT. Security is one of the big challenges for implementing ecotourism projects in the CHT. However, this can be overcome through integration of Army, as they are presently deployed in the region. The construction projects run by SWO also ensure Army’s presence in the region. Thus it will be easy to implement ecotourism projects in the CHT integrating Army. But Army alone cannot implement this type of projects, other stakeholders of tourism sector also should be integrated in the overall framework and the framework has to be formulated through policy guidelines. Once the projects are implemented and the benefits are harnessed by the tribal communities, it would ensure permanent peace and stability in the regions after decade’s long bloodshed. This study recommends that; a high level committee involving all stake holders should identify the most potential ecotourism sites from Bandarban, Khagrachari and Rangamati region for implementing such projects giving initial lead role to Army.  Considering midterm and long term plan, initiative should be taken by MoCAT to activate all levels of action committee and allocate fund through concerned ministry/department. Media campaign with awareness programme should be under taken to promote ecotourism and attract the tourists from home and abroad.


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Books and Publications

Morshed, M Mahbubur Rahman, Bangladesh Tourism Vision 2020, Dhaka, Bangladesh, Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation, 2004.

Vijay, Sinha, Travel, Tourism and Eco-Tourism”, Random Publications, New Delhi, 2012.

Swadesh, Sinha, International Tourism and Sustainable development, Random Publications, New Delhi, 2012.

Chowdhury, ASM Manzur Morshed, Tourism in Bangladesh–Tourism Marketing mix strategy and economic impact on national development/GDP of Bangladesh, Dhaka, Bangladesh, Tempera Printers & Colour Ltd, 2010

Roy, D, A Mohsin and P Gain, The Chittagong Hill Tracts : Life and Nature at Risk, Dhaka, 2000.

Rafi, Mohammad (Edited), Counting The Hills-Assessing Development in Chittagong Hill Tracts, Dhaka, The University Press Limited, 2001.

Workshop Reports/ Seminar Papers/ Research Papers

ESCAP Tourism Review No. 21, Opportunities and challenges for Tourism Investment: A Case Study of the People Republic of Korea and Report from Selected Countries in Asia and Pacific, New York, United Nations, 2001.

Wight, Ms. Pamela, Ecotourism Planning And Policy Development: Theme, A UNEP/WTO Summary of Regional Preparatory Conferences and Discussion Paper for the World Ecotourism Summit, 2002.

The World Tourism Organization, Mid-Term Comprehensive Global Review of the Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries for the Decade 2001-2010, Report to the United Nations Secretary General, 2004.

Sedai, R Chandra, Assessing the Sustainability of Tourism in Rural Areas - A Case Study of Tamang Heritage Trail, Rasuwa, Nepal, Kathmandu Academy of Tourism and Hospitality, 2006.

Rahman, A F M Atiqur, Integration of Armed Forces in Developing Physical Infrastructure for Tourism Industry in Chittagong Hill Tracts, Individual Research Paper, Armed Forces War Course- 2013.

Mowla, A Shafiul, Political Economy of Tourism In Chittagong Hill Districts, Individual Research Paper, National Defence Course- 2012.

Journal Articles

Hossain, Md Sarwar, ‘Prospect of military tourism in Bangladesh’, The Daily Sun, Dhaka, 05 April 2014.

Howlader, Ziaul Haque, ‘Bandarban : A Green Roof of Bangladesh, a paradise for tourists’, The Daily Sun, Dhaka, 10 July 2012.

Alam, Zahirul, ‘Local Resources of Chittagong Hill Tracts - Present Status and Prospects’, Bangladesh Journal of Political Economy Vol. 23, No. 1 & 2.

Websites/ Online Documents on 20 April 2014. accessed on 23 April 2014. accessed on 05 May 2014. on 26 march 2014. accessed on 26 march 2014. accessed on 05 August 2014. accessed on 15 June 2014.


Author’s interview with Md Maksudul Hasan Khan, Chairman, BPC On 02 July 2014 At Dhaka

Author’s interview with Mr Mueed Chowdhury (Ex Advisor to Care Taker Government and Ex Secretary to GOB), Chairman, Tiger Tours, on 15 May 2014 at Dhaka.

Author’s interview with Brigadier General Md Sarwar Hossain, hdmc, psc, Former Brigade Commander, Rangamati Hill District, on 25 March 2014 at Dhaka.

Author’s interview with Brigadier General Quazi Shamsul Islam, Commander, 203 Infantry Brigade, Khagrachari Region.

Author’s interview with Brigadier General Ridwan-Al-Mahmood, ndc, afwc, psc, Commander, 305 Infantry Brigade , Rangamati Region.

Author’s interview with Lieutenant Colonel Arif Uddin Mahmud, Staff Officer-1 (Project)- Special Works Organization (SWO) East, Chittagong.



How to Cite

Lieutenant Colonel Md Ehsanul Kabir, afwc, psc, Sigs. (2015). ECO-TOURISM AND BANGLADESH ARMY: A FOCUS ON THE CHITTAGONG HILL TRACTS . NDC E-JOURNAL, 14(1), 9: 1-24. Retrieved from

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