Tuesday 25 February 2020 ,
Tuesday 25 February 2020 ,
Latest News
  • Mushfiq gets his third 'Double Century'
  • Salman Shah committed suicide: PBI
  • Malaysian PM Mahathir submits resignation
  • Trump receives warm welcome in India
  • Coronavirus: Family of infected Bangladeshi in Singapore to receive $10,000
  • GP ordered to pay another Tk 1,000cr within 3 months
  • Dhaka vehicles now move at walking pace
  • Britain starts hearing US case for extraditing Assange
  • 400 bureaucrats set to get promotion despite lack of posts
28 January, 2020 00:00 00 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 27 January, 2020 11:32:29 PM
Print

Dredging money goes down the drain

ANISUR RAHMAN KHAN, Dhaka
Dredging money goes down the drain
This recent photo shows a woman walking with two children on the heavily silted Gorai riverbed at Haripur in Kushtia sadar upazila. Siltation has greatly diminished the river flow despite the spending of Tk 1,165 crore under several projects from 1998 to 2017. Independent Photo

The government spent about Tk 1,165 crore under the ‘Gorai River Restoration Project’ between 1998 and 2017, but the money has been wasted due to the lack of proper planning. The river has become filled up due to the discontinuation of maintenance dredging even after the spending of huge amount of public money. Besides, gross irregularities had allegedly occurred during the implementation of the Tk 942-crore ‘Gorai River Restoration Project Phase-II’, which was among the Tk 1,165 crore spent until 2017.

Currently, the water resources ministry is implementing Tk 591.58-crore 'Gorai River Dredging and Bank Protection Project’, which began on October 1, 2018 and is expected to end by June 2022. But the Bangladesh Water Development Board (WDB) has again submitted to the Planning Commission another project for Gorai River dredging at an estimated cost of Tk 1293.46 crore.

According to WDB sources, the government has approved a total of Tk 1,756.58 crore under the ‘Gorai River Restoration Project’ from 1998 till date.

Green activists and leaders of the ‘Bangladesh Nadi Bachao Andolan’ have expressed their concerns over the ‘so-called’ restoration of the Gorai River.

They claim that the department concerned has failed to make the project viable because of its faulty design and dredging alignment.

In 2012, The Independent ran a report on the project. The report quoted Kushtia local body representatives who had alleged that the project’s contractor had not followed the river’s course during the dredging work. This had left banks on either side over a vast stretch vulnerable to erosion during the rainy season.

For decades, the Gorai has been trickling its way past the Sundarbans as layer after layer of silt kept choking its natural flow.

The consequences have been disastrous as the river is a vital lifeline for the country’s south-western region and helps irrigate thousands of acres of farmland along its way. The Gorai River Restoration Project Phase-II, which began on December 2, 2010, was scheduled to be completed in June 2012, but it eventually completed in 2017. China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) had been selected for dredging the Gorai.

“We will dredge a total of 44km of the Gorai. The dredging width of the river is 120 metres and depth will be eight metres at the mouth of the river. Gradually the depth will be two metres,” Md Moniruzzaman, superintendent engineer of Kushtia, told The Independent recently.

He said a total of 3.29 crore cubic metres of silt would be removed from the river.

When asked about the low quality of the dredging and improper plan, Moniruzzaman, who is also the project director, said: “We won’t compromise in terms of quality. Several elements are involved in the project. So, there is no scope for low-quality dredging. Earlier, the dredging width of the river was narrow, but now a committee has ordered an

increase in the dredging width.” He also said heavy siltation frequently filled up the river and it was impossible to keep the river navigable unless there was continuous maintenance dredging round the year.

The project will also revive the river’s tributaries that play a vital role in balancing the ecosystem of the Sundarbans.

 

Comments

Most Viewed
Digital Edition
Archive
SunMonTueWedThuFri Sat
01
02030405060708
09101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
More Front Page stories
Teen-gang culture pops up again Once again, youth gang culture is spreading across the country and has become a new cause of concern for society. In recent times, a clampdown by law enforcers forced gangs to go into hiding, and no crimes…

Copyright © All right reserved.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Disclaimer & Privacy Policy
....................................................
About Us
....................................................
Contact Us
....................................................
Advertisement
....................................................
Subscription

Powered by : Frog Hosting