The Tea Research Institute at Tocklai is all set for a makeover soon with the Assam Government offering Rs 5 crore for development of its campus and heritage buildings in order to boost tourism in Assam.
The state government project has been brought into force mainly by Speaker Hitendra Nath Goswami and is expected to be completed within seven months.
Tocklai has a huge campus of 39 acres which houses heritage buildings, laboratories, workshop, tea factory, bungalows and a guest house built with the help of the Assam and Bengal governments, reports The Telegraph.
The heritage buildings are now used as tea research laboratories.
The 88 year Tocklai Guest House which was used to accommodate British tea planters who attended field management courses at Tocklai will now be renovated.
AK Barooah said that since Tocklai has rich heritage, good climatic conditions and geographical locations and mostly the facilities to demonstrate the methods of tea cultivation and processing that can make it an important tourist spot.
He also said that the campus has a large number of water bodies and innumerable features of natural attraction in the nearby areas.
The project is planning to develop suitable facilities for tourists to enjoy.
Barooah said that the tea factory will be a place where the tourists can witness the stages of tea processing and also try tasting different varieties at the tasting unit.
A tea museum will be set up with various models and displays and the Tocklai Insect Museum will also house various insect species to attract tourists.
Tocklai is also planning to partner with other tea tourism enterprises like Kaziranga Golf Resort (Bura Sahib bungalow), Banyan Grove, Thengal Manor bungalow in Jorhat district, the Mancotta chang bungalow and Chowkidingee chang bungalow situated in the heart of Dibrugarh town.
Apart from that, Tocklai is also planning to get in touch with Kaziranga National Park, Manas National Park and Dihing-Patkai wildlife sanctuary.
Barooah said that the tea tourism sector at Darjeeling had already been established and will be linked with Tocklai as most of the tea gardens are members of the Tea Research Association.