03 Feb 2023, 11:27

Scheme to protect Tk 3,231.33-cr assets from river erosion in Rajshahi

RAJSHAHI, Feb 3, 2023 (BSS) - Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB) has
been implementing a project to protect immovable and movable assets worth
around Taka 3,231.33 crore from erosion of the River Padma in the district.
The project titled "Protection of Installations along the left bank of the
Padma River from its erosion in Charghat and Bagha upazilas in Rajshahi" with
an estimated cost of around Taka 616.80 crore.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the project during her visit to
Rajshahi on January 29 last.

Talking to BSS here Thursday, BWDB Superintending Engineer and Director of
the project Shafiqul Islam said river embankment protection works are being
done on 5.10-kilometer area through necessary infrastructure development
involving around Taka 354.10 crore.

"We are also implementing dredging works on a 12.10-kilometer area for
restoring its navigability besides diverting the water current to the middle
portion of the river at a cost of around Taka 262.70 crore," he added.
Land reclamation together with protecting the left bank will be attained
through changing the way of river-flow upon successful implementation of the
dredging works.

The project has provision of setting stairs on the improved areas that will
facilitate access to the people in terms of going to the river coupled with
doing different other river-based works.

Apart from this, benches will be built along the river-embankment that will
contribute a lot towards transforming the area into a tourist and amusement
spot as well.

The project, as a whole, is intended to protect Charghat and Bagha upazilas,
particularly the vulnerable Raotha, Alaipur, Meerganj, Gakulpur and Charghat
BOP areas, from the river erosion.

Upon successful implementation of the scheduled dredging works, navigation of
the river will be enhanced besides ensuring its normal flow and protecting
the left bank through changing water channels.

The dredging works will ultimately strengthen the river-embankment protection
works in addition to protect the most-vulnerable and erosion-prone Pakuria
and Chalk Rajapur Unions under Bagha upazila from erosion of the Padma river.

Crossbars will be built with the dredged sands that will generate scopes of
reclaiming 120 hectares of land in between the crossbars. Trees will be
planted on the crossbars which will make sure an environment-friendly
atmosphere besides mitigating the adverse impact of climate change.uu

Sustainable and dependable embankment and dredging works will ensure poverty
alleviation, employment generation and improving living and livelihood
conditions of the surrounding people.

Upazila Chairman Fakhrul Islam said the river-bank areas including Alaipur,
Kishorepur, Panikamra and Meergonj in Bagha and Pirojpur and Raotha in
Charghat Upazilas were very much erosion-prone and many of those areas have
already been devoured by the erosion.
In the last 10-15 years, around one-kilometer mainland of the areas along
with homesteads and croplands have been eroded and people face erosion
leaving many of them homeless and asset-less almost every year.

Expressing their deep gratitude to the government, particularly Prime
Minister Sheikh Hasina, for the initiative Islam said the project will
contribute a lot towards getting relief from the recurrent natural disaster.

He mentioned that there are some key-point installations, including
Bangladesh Police Academy, Rajshahi Cadet College, BGB Outpost and Police
Station, in the area. So, there are bright prospects of turning the crossbar
areas into potential tourist spots.

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