POST TIME: 20 January, 2020 00:00 00 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 20 January, 2020 01:14:28 AM
Remove hurdles in river dredging

Remove hurdles in 
river dredging

It is disturbing that the Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) has been facing problems in its dredging projects in four districts, because of lack of space to dump the dug up silt, sand lifting lease by the local administration and interruption by local people. According to a report of this newspaper yesterday, dredging of the Arial Kha river in Narsingdi, Kaliganga in Manikganj, Atrai in Naogaon and Chalti river in Sylhet is being hampered seriously.

It is surprising how the dredging work of the Arial Kha can be suspended for several months even after completion of about 72 per cent of the capital dredging project? As stated in the report the local administration has not   demarcated the river for dredging. Why should local people obstruct the dredging of the Kaliganga in Manikganj district and Chalti river in Sylhet?  It is the responsibility of the relevant authorities and the lawmakers of the areas to make people understand the importance of dredging. The other hurdles that impede the dredging works should also be removed without further loss of time.    

Rivers are the lifeline of a country and they are responsible for sound environment, bio-diversity, ecological balance, flora and fauna. They play vital roles in economic development of the country as livelihood of millions of people is dependent on them. Rivers are the repositories of fish that provide proteins for the vast population of the country. Besides, rivers play important roles in irrigating lands.   

  What is worrying is that many rivers of our country have lost navigability. Many rivers have died untimely death due to human interventions while many rivers are mere shadows of their former self. Against this dismal scenario the initiative for dredging the rivers is a relief. Through dredging navigability of a river can be restored. But the slothful dredging activities do not raise much hope. The concerned officials should expedite the dredging work. It is sincerity of the relevant officials and workers that matters.   

But it is unfortunate to note that crores of taka had been allegedly misused in such river dredging activities. In the past the river dredging work was started with much fanfare only to be suspended on various pretexts. What is needed is proper monitoring, supervision and accountability of the dredging works done.