Birgunj hotels on brink of total financial ruin

PARSA: The hotel business in Birgunj is on the verge of collapse due to repeated strikes, shutdowns, extortion spree and increasing insecurity in the town.

Hoteliers here are worried after the number of guests staying in their hotels went down due to increasing insecurity. According to the chairman of Hotel Entrepreneurs' Association, Parsa, Krishna Man Shrestha, some hotel entrepreneurs have already left Birgunj after shutting down their business as they could not cope with the repeated strikes, shutdowns, extortion terror and death threats.

The number of guests staying in even the A class hotels in town has decreased these days because of insecurity. Hotel Makalu, Bishwa, Suraj and Diyalo are among the A class hotels here. People arriving in town from other places in connection with official work prefer to return the same day due to rising insecurity, said Hotel Makalu's proprietor Deepak Shrestha. Around two dozen hotels are in operation in Birgunj, a major business centre of the country.

Meanwhile, two unions at Gokarna Forest Resort — one affiliated to the UCPN-Maoist and other owing allegiance to CPN-UML — have been creating troubles. After an intervention, they have withdrawn their protest programmes after reaching a four-point agreement to settle problems through dialogue between the management and the in-house unions. They had reached the agreement after a talk held among representatives of resort management, central level representatives of trade unions and those of Hotel Association Nepal (HAN).

The resort management and in-house trade unions are continuing with dialogue for a final agreement. The agreement has elaborated that the central leaders of trade unions cannot direct their in-house trade unions when talks are going on. As per the agreement, if the dialogue does not yield fruit make within 10 days further talks will be held in the presence of HAN.