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Khulna polythene factory operating in contravention of law

  • Published at 12:00 pm October 1st, 2018
The factory, without a signboard, has been operating round-the-clock for the last year Dhaka Tribune

Despite Department of Environment warnings, the factory owner has not changed how his factory operates

A polythene factory is operating in Khulna’s Sonadanga area, breaching environmental laws. 

The Department of Environment’s (DoE) Khulna divisional office has issued several notices to the factory but its owner pays them no heed.

The factory, without a signboard, has been operating round-the-clock for the last year. 

Children of the area are in a vulnerable position due to loud noises and foul smells emitted from the factory—which worries families around the facility.

Local resident HM Alauddin said it becomes difficult to stay at home because of the loud noise and bad odour. 

He said his son has bronchitis because of the bad smell. 

On August 26, the DoE’s Khulna divisional office issued a show-cause notice to Md Moeen Uddin, owner of the Sadia Enterprise and Plastic Factory. 

In its notice, the DoE said the factory was manufacturing substandard polythene, causing sound pollution, at70 decibels, and emitting a stench while melting used polythene. 

These violations are punishable offences in line with the Bangladesh Environment Conservation Act (Amendment) 2002, and Environment Protection Rules 1997, it said. 

The factory owner was asked to explain why the DoE should not take legal measures, including scrapping its environmental certificate, and operating for 12 hours from 8am. 

If the conditions are violated the DoE enforcement team will file a case against the factory owner, impose fines, and confiscate its equipment, the notice further said. 

The factory, without a signboard, has been operating round-the-clock for the last year | Dhaka Tribune

However, the factory is not complying with the conditions. 

DoE Khulna division’s Assistant Director Sardar Shariful Islam said the factory owner has written a letter claiming that they are not polluting the environment and breaching any conditions of the environmental certificate. 

“But we see no sign in favour of his claims. We will issue another notice asking him on which ground he made the claims,” he said. 

DoE Khulna division’s Director Md Habibul Haque Khan said they have already directed the mobile court to conduct a drive against the factory. 

Factory Owner Moeen Uddin said he is searching for a place to relocate the factory. 

“We need some time. We have sought time from the Department of Environment for that,” he said. 

Local Ward Councillor Sheikh Hafizur Rahman said he did not know that the factory was operating in his area. 

He said he visited the factory last month and asked the owner to shut down its operations. 

During an investigation it was found that the factory owner obtained a No Objection Certificate from ward no 21 office though the factory falls under ward no 17. 

However, Ward 21 Councillor Shamsuzzaman Mia Swapan said he was unaware of having issued the No Objection Certificate.