• Friday, Sep 17, 2021
  • Last Update : 08:17 pm

Yaas: How Bhasan Char prepared for the cyclone

  • Published at 01:06 pm May 29th, 2021
File photo: Rohingya settlement at Bhashan Char in Noakhali Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

All preparations regarding allocations of shelters for FDMNs, local people, NGOs, project workers and foreigners were done by May 24, said officials

Bhasan Char, the temporary shelter for the Rohingya people until repatriation, heaved a sigh of relief as cyclone Yaas left the island untouched. 

The island was spared during Amphan too, though the cyclone had caused damages in the coastal districts of the country, a senior government official said. 

"So, disaster preparedness is essential before a cyclone. This also helps in instilling confidence in people," he said. 

In Bhasan Char, apart from the residents, their livestock were also shifted to shelter stations set up ahead of the cyclone. All vehicles were kept inside warehouse-1. 

Necessary preparations were also taken to prevent internal waterlogging -- by setting up high-capacity pumps and operating sluice gates during low tides. 

Briefings, rehearsals conducted

Briefings were conducted for the Rohingya Majhi (focals) regarding preparedness for the cyclone, officials said.  

A rehearsal was also conducted to demonstrate the shifting of the Rohingya refugees from their cluster houses to the respective shelter stations. 

All preparations regarding allocations of shelters for FDMNs, local people, NGOs, project workers and foreigners were done by May 24, officials said. 

Availability of dry food, management and other administrative issues were also considered in coordination with RRRC. 

During the showers, officials said, there were no reports of any waterlogging inside the embankment and the cluster area. 

Maximum water was drained out through the sluice gates and remaining water reserved in the canals, lakes and ponds. 

During his recent visit, United Nations General Assembly President Volkan Bozkir highly appreciated Bangladesh's efforts for the Rohingya refugees in Bhashan Char, saying it will set another example to the world on how to deal with refugee issues. 

"I really applaud the work done there -- the quality of buildings and also taking all the precautions. I think this will be another example to the world on how to deal with refugee issues," he said. 

Bozkir hoped that this would work well for the Rohingya people, giving them a better condition in Bhashan Char. 

The UNGA president said he could not visit Bhasan Char but he saw a video on it and acknowledged the high-level of work there, including precautions and safety measures. 

Bozkir appreciated Bangladesh's role in the peacekeeping operations and sacrifices of the Bangladeshi peacekeepers for the peace and security of the world. 

 The UNGA president said he has admiration for Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for her political and humanitarian thinking and saluted the hospitality and courage that Bangladesh has shown to the Rohingya people. 

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