• Wednesday, Sep 19, 2018
  • Last Update : 09:43 am

Getting tough on grabbers and polluters

  • Published at 04:57 pm July 27th, 2018
River
Photo: SYED ZAKIR HOSSAIN

Saving our rivers is a more important goal that short-term profit, or petty political interests

Dredging up our rivers and getting them back to full functionality is not only a worthy initiative, but a matter of the greatest urgency.

To that end, it is good to see that the Shipping Ministry has completed the dredging of 15,000 kilometers of riverbed to improve navigability, but it is also regrettable to see that these efforts are being hindered by the illegal removal of sand.

River grabbing must be stopped, and polluters must be punished, and now that deputy commissioners have been asked to take steps to do so, it is hoped that tough action will be taken against those who use power and influence to destroy the lifeblood of Bangladesh.

As a riverine country, rivers are inextricably tied to our heritage and livelihood, but the way we have mistreated all of our major rivers is nothing short of a large-scale tragedy.

For example, the water in some of our rivers like Buriganga, Dhaleshwari, Balu, and Turag Bongshi are so contaminated that it has become impossible to even treat the water to make it fit for human use.

So apart from dredging to improve navigability, steps should be taken to stop the continuous discharge of the thousands of tons of industrial waste, sewage water, and garbage into our rivers.

At the end of the day, saving our rivers is a more important goal that short-term profit, or petty political interests -- it is a national goal in which all have stake.

Can we not protect and save the rivers which have done so much to make our lives possible?