Dhaka, Bangladesh
Special budgetary allocation for Rajshahi demanded

Special budgetary allocation for Rajshahi demanded

RAJSHAHI, April 21: Social watchdogs at a human chain-cum-street-corner meeting here today demanded special budgetary allocation for development of Rajshahi, reports BSS. They said the issues of re-launching of Rajshahi Silk Factory, construction of Ganges Barrage, implementation of North Rajshahi Irrigation Project and ensuring of railway connectivity between Rajshahi and other parts of the country should be brought under special allocation. Rajshahi Rakkha Sangram Parishad (RRSP) organized the programme at Shaheb Bazar Zero Point putting forward the demands. With RRSP President Liakat Ali in the chair, General Secretary Jamat Khan, Freedom Fighter Dr Abdul Mannan, business leader Sekendar Ali, Senior Journalist Mustafizur Rahman Khan, local leader of Bangladesh Mohila Parishad Kolpona Roy and development activists Aklima Khatun Lima spoke on the occasion. The speakers called for immediate implementation of the Ganges Barrage Project and North Rajshahi Irrigation Project to protect country's south-western region, including the Sundarbans. They viewed that proposed Ganges Barrage will be a blessing for Bangladesh since the country is a low riparian area facing water-related problems. About US$ 4 billion is needed to implement the Ganges Barrage Project, but the annual incremental benefit of the project will be Tk 7,340 crore, which means the cost of barrage project will be returned within five years, they claim. According to the feasibility study, once the project is implemented, agricultural production in the Ganges dependent area will increase while additional paddy production would be about 26 lakh metric tonnes minimizing the crop damage area and loss of paddy significantly. Additional fish production would be about 2.4 lakh metric tonnes, the speakers said. The increased upstream water flow will reduce the rate of siltation in the river systems in the Southwest region. About 33% area of the Sundarbans would become moderately low saline zones and about 11, 000 hectares of land in the Sundarbans would become very low salinity zone. RRSP president Liakat Ali said agricultural production will increase in the region and its one-third of population will be benefited economically and environmentally from the project. He said Bangladesh will not face any trouble in getting equity share of the trans-boundary river water as per the Ganges Water Treaty signed between Bangladesh and India in 1996. Bangladesh will be benefited from the project in all aspects - salinity will be reduced considerably and all dead rivers of the region will be recharged after implementation of the project.

Share |