Monday, April 15, 2024

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বাংলা
Dhaka Tribune

HILL CUTTING

Swimming pool at Sajek resort halted, owner fined 2L

The development comes a day after the High Court ordered the authorities to take measures to stop hill cutting in Sajek valley

Update : 03 Apr 2024, 09:09 PM

The local administration on Wednesday conducted a raid at Meghpolli Resort at Sajek in Baghaichari Upazila of Rangamati and fined the owner for constructing a swimming pool by cutting down a hill. 

At the same time, the authorities closed down the pool until further notice. 

The development comes a day after the High Court ordered the authorities to take measures to stop hill cutting in Sajek valley.

A mobile court led by Shirin Akhter, Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO), stopped the construction and hung a red flag at the resort.  The owner of the resort, Malik Shah Alam, paid a fine of Tk2 lakh to the mobile court. 

The UNO said: "We have received a writ order of the High Court on stopping the extraction of the hills in Sajek. We came to the spot to execute the court order. "

The High Court on Tuesday issued a rule, asking authorities concerned to explain in four weeks why it shall not declare the administration's inaction in stopping down hills in Sajek illegal. 

The court also asked the authorities concerned to explain why it shall not pass the order to take steps to stop the cutting of hills and bring the damaged hills back to their previous state.

The court asked the administration to form a monitoring team so that no one could cut down hills illegally.

The rights group Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh (HRPB) filed the writ on Monday as alarming news of the resort authorities cutting down hills to construct a swimming pool appeared in the media on Friday.

Senior Advocate Manzill Murshid moved the plea for HRPB, while Deputy Attorney General Protikar Chakma stood for the state.

The valley is located in Baghaichari Upazila, which is 70 kilometres away from Khagrachari district and 40 kilometres from Dighinala.

There are currently 116 resorts and 16 restaurants in the two-kilometre tourist area of the valley. 

Suparna Deb Burman, president of the Sajek Resort and Cottage Owners Association, told Dhaka Tribune that the first resort in the valley was built in 2015. Soon the spot became a popular tourist destination. 

 

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