People are currently suffering in the northern districts of the country, and have been left marooned due to devastating floods
As Bangladesh continues its battle against the Covid-19 pandemic, it must be remembered that as difficult as it may be, we must also address other threats to the wellbeing of our population. One such issue is the all too familiar threat of floods.
To that end, it is extremely disheartening to hear that hundreds of thousands of people are currently suffering in the northern districts of the country, and have been left marooned due to devastating floods.
Floods are not a new phenomenon in Bangladesh and unfortunately, every year we see untold destruction of crops, damage of roads and infrastructure, and of course, immense suffering for hundreds of thousands of people as they see their belongings, and often their homes, being washed away due to the floods, leaving them with nothing.
However, what makes the current situation worse is that most of the people who are being forced to sleep without a roof over their heads are barely getting any food and provisions, and are surviving on dry food. This is unacceptable.
These people are already going through extreme suffering -- losing their homes and belongings. They should not have to fear starvation as well, and the authorities must do a better job with their relief efforts and ensure that not a single person goes hungry.
However, relief efforts, while commendable, are not, and have never been, the long-term solution for flooding in Bangladesh. Bangladesh is a low-lying country and will be prone to flooding every year, especially as we are also among the most vulnerable countries to the effects of climate change.
What has been needed, for which we still see little progress, is a sound strategy to tackle the devastation caused by flooding, year in, year out. Unless we see a sustainable long-term solution emerge, floods will continue to catch us off-guard, causing inestimable damage.