Sylhet flood: Surma-Kushiyara river dikes collapsed in 38 places

Around 2,060 metres of embankment has been compromised, say WDB officials

The ongoing flood in Sylhet has damaged the Surma and Kushiyara river dikes in as many as 38 places, causing 2,060 metres of the embankment to be compromised. 

Meanwhile, two regulators of the dam were also broken, resulting in houses and croplands of seven upazilas being submerged in floodwater.

Asif Ahmed, executive engineer of Sylhet Water Development Board (WDB), said authorities are working currently to determine the extent of the actual damage. 

“We have already started working on some of the destroyed places of the dam, and hope to work on the remaining ones soon,” he added. 

In the last ten days, 700 metres of the dams of Kushiyara River and Surma River were reported damaged in Zakiganj. 

Meanwhile, 140 metres in Beanibazar upazila, 395 metres in Kanaighat upazila, 35 metres in Dakshin Surma upazila, among others were also reported damaged.

As a consequence, floodwaters flowed through 16 places in Zakiganj, 26 places in Kanaighat upazila, five places in Beanibazar upazila, four places in Dakshin Surma upazila and four places in Golapganj upazila. 

Around Tk22 crore worth of fish has been washed away in the floods. Furthermore, the agricultural sector has lost over Tk15 crores worth of crops due to floodwater.

SM Shahidul Islam, the additional chief engineer of WDB said Surma and Kushiyara rivers are overflowing and are no longer able to hold water. 

WDB has undertaken two major projects for dredging the Surma-Kushiyara rivers soon, he added.

Sources at Bangladesh Poribesh Andolon (Bapa) said that Surma and Kushiyara rivers have been filled up and numerous char lands have emerged due to the waste at the bottom of the rivers.

They said in the dry season, Sylhet’s Barak River’s water only flows into the Kushiyara River. At this time people can cross the Kushiyara river on foot. 

However, public waste from the cities is dumped in the Surma River every day, which has been causing the river to fill up with plastic waste.

As a consequence, unwanted char lands have emerged in different places, which destroy the rivers’ navigability.