Jamuna erodes 100 structures in Sirajganj
14 primary schools, 200 houses under erosion threat
SIRAJGANJ, June 11: Untimely erosion in the Jamuna River is devouring houses, different institutions including educational ones, and croplands in the district.
Already many houses, schools and vast farmlands have been eroded in different upazilas of the district.
According to field sources, due to the erosion at the severe level, thousands of people have been displaced.
The river has started swelling before start of the rainy season. Areas like Shahzadpur, Chaohali and Enayetpur upazilas are experiencing the erosion. In the last one week, over 100 houses, more than one education institutions, and vast croplands were eroded.
Panic-driven people along the river bank are removing their houses to safer places.
At least 14 government primary schools, over 200 houses, other institutions and croplands are under the erosion threat.
To mention, the erosion of the Jamuna River is an old experience. Promise was made year after year about resisting the erosion. But no effective measure has yet been taken.
The Water Development Board (WDB)-Sirajganj authority said, an erosion prevention project of Tk 650 crore is awaiting ECNEC approval.
Locals said, with the rising water-level in the Jamuna, severe erosion has started across 7.5 kilometre (KM) stretches ranging from Khawja Yunus Ali Medical College to Shahzadpur's Koijuri.
In the last 10 days, more than 100 houses and wide farmlands in Pachil and Haat Pachil of Koijuri Union of Shahzadpur Upazila, in Pakarhtala of Jalalpur Union of the same upazila, in Brahmanpara Village of Enayetpur were embedded.
Losing all belongings, inhabitants of these localities have taken shelters on different road sides, and in other houses; along with their wives, children, and cattle, distressed people are passing days in hardship.
Also about 3km river stretches in Baghutia Union's Hatail, Ghushuria, Hijulia, and Kathalia, and Umarpur Union's Poila under Chaohali Upazila have been eroded; Hatail Government Primary School and Pachwim Hatail Government Primary School have been eroded.
Pachwim Sambhulia Government Primary School, Khas Maddhya Shishulia Government Primary School, Hijolia Government Primary School, Mishrigati Government Primary School, Barboyra Government Primary School, Yusuf Shahi Salongi Government Primary School, Beeljalhar Government Primary School, Bawsha Government Primary School, Shoilojana Government Primary School, and Hatail Junior Secondary School are under erosion threat.
Head Teacher of Chaohali Government Primary School Rejaul Karim said, the school was evacuated on June 2 due to erosion.
Chaohali Upazila Primary Education Officer Jahangir Firoz said, already two schools have been embedded due to erosion; at least 14 ones are under threat; and a list of these institutions has been sent to the authorities concerned.
Locals complained, the 7.5km stretches ranging from Enayetpur Khawja Yunus Ali Medical College to Koijuri were remained unprotected for a long time; every year dwellers lose their houses and belongings for river erosion; and thousands of people have lost their all things in the last 10 years.
Local public representatives and WDB's high officials have inspected eroded areas. Later, they made promise of resisting the erosion.
But no project has yet been implemented.
Tabibur Rahman at Khukni Union in Shahzadpur Upazila said, in the last four years, his lands were embedded because of erosion; and for the last two weeks, his last land piece of 30 decimal and his house have started to witness erosion since May 29.
"After leaving house, we have taken shelter on road," he mentioned.
He further said, "When erosion began five years back, it was promised to raise embankment. But the embankment work has not begun yet. I have lost everything. It is the same with many others."
Executive Engineer of the WDB in the district Shafiqul Islam said, in the erosion-prone areas, monitoring is being conducted round the clock.
He further said, the Tk 650 crore project is awaiting the ECNEC approval in order to make embankment across about 7km unprotected stretches ranging from Enayetpur to Koijuri.
After the approval, the construction of the embankment will begin, he gave assurance, adding, then erosion will no longer be there.
He mentioned, primarily, sand bags and geo bags are dumped to check the erosion, he mentioned.