• Friday, Jan 24, 2020
  • Last Update : 02:19 am

High and dry

  • Published at 05:48 pm September 13th, 2018

The challenge at hand is to help the poor souls still trapped in the flood waters

Bangladesh has always been a flood-prone nation.

We have a long history of frequent, destructive floods, which have caused untold damage to our cities and rural settlements.

But when a flood is the result of human actions, and leaves thousands upon thousands stranded in the aftermath, the tragedy takes on another dimension.

Around 23 villages in the char areas of the Teesta and Dharala rivers have been flooded following an onrush of water from hilly areas upstream. The trans-boundary Teesta river was already flowing around 8cm above the danger level at the time, but the flood is believed to have been triggered when India opened the sluice gates to the Gazaldoba barrage.

More than 10,000 people have been left trapped by the water, according to reports, and many of them have lost whatever meagre possessions they had to begin with.

The Teesta river water-sharing has been a bone of contention between India and Bangladesh for a good while, and this kind of action on India’s part does not help us work towards a mutually beneficial solution.

But, politics aside, first things first -- the challenge at hand is to help the poor souls still trapped in the flood waters, and those in need of shelter and aid.

We have full faith in our government’s ability to address this crisis, and if neighbouring India were to lend a helping hand due to its part in the crisis, it would go a long way in fostering good relations for the future.