May 8, 2021

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Brickfields everywhere, agriculture and biodiversity under threat

Ignoring the government rules and regulations, 25 brickfields are being built on agricultural land by ‘managing’ the local administration in Bogra’s Dhunte. These do not have any environmental clearances, licenses and updated documents. Even after that it is going on year after year.These brickfields are upsetting the balance of the environment, causing extensive damage to crop lands as well. Not only that, due to lack of supervision by the administration, children are also being used in making bricks, pulling and burning raw bricks in these unauthorized kilns, which is completely illegal.

It has been seen on the spot that the local influential people have built the brickfields next to agricultural land, educational institutions and residential areas without any plan. Wood is burning at low tide without heeding the rules. This is causing damage to plants due to black smoke and ash, decreasing crop production. The farmers are not getting any remedy even after making a written complaint to the deputy commissioner.

In the villages of Khaduli, Kurigati, Ujalshing, Gobindpur and Jolagati in the upazila, 6 brickfields have been built on three crop lands in an area of ​​about 500 meters. The brickfields are Ekta, Five Star, Boss, Grameen, Adarsh, Bandhu, BBC and Diganta. Despite the damage to agriculture, environment and biodiversity, the Department of Environment and the Upazila administration are not taking any effective action against these brickfields.

The affected farmers complained that the toxic gas emitted from the brickfields had caused the paddy on their land to rot. It is far from profitable, it has become difficult to raise production costs. And only after 20-22 days the paddy harvest will start. This is what happened.

Several owners of the brickyards, who did not want to be named, said they were operating the brickyards with regular payments to the administration without approval. The administration collects large sums of money from the owners of the vats in the name of different days. They also gave this money to keep the business afloat. However, they will soon take the brickwork paperwork.

Dhunat Upazila Agriculture Officer Mashidul Haque said, “After receiving the allegation of damage to the paddy field of the farmer, evidence of the incident has been found. Necessary action will be taken against the landlords in consultation with senior officials in this regard.

Dhunat Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Sanjay Kumar Mahanta said, “The Upazila Agriculture Officer has been given the responsibility to investigate the allegation of damage to the paddy fields of the farmers and take action. Besides, it is being checked whether the brickfields have valid documents.

Earlier, in March-April, the government had banned all kinds of fishing in the river to conserve Jatka. But that ban ended at midnight on Friday (April 30). After that the fishermen fell into the river in groups with fishing nets and boats.

Talks were held with Barek Radhi, a fisherman of Uttar Gobindia village in Chandpur Sadar upazila. He said that the loan installments of the NGO are not much to the creditors. Apart from that, he was unemployed for the last two months. The seven members of the family are in dire straits. But if you don’t get the desired hilsa now, the misery will increase. In the meantime, Eid is also coming.

Another fisherman named Rahim Gazi of Akhenerhat next door also expressed his grief at the tune of Barek Radhi. The same expression applies to thousands of fishermen fishing in the Padma and Meghna rivers of Chandpur.

Meanwhile, the big station wholesale fishing ground of the district town is also a uniform picture. Sunshan silence has been going on there since Saturday morning. However, fish traders are full of hope. Because, many of them have paid in advance to the fishermen.

Chandpur District Fisheries Officer. Asadul Baki said that despite the strictures of the law enforcement agencies, Jatka was killed by a class of dishonest fishermen. However, legal action has been taken against the lion’s share of them. In such a situation, about 40 metric tons of jatka, 42 crore meters of banned current nets have been seized.

Not only that, as food aid from the government, 60 kg of rice has been given to each fishing family in two months.

One of the country’s fisheries scientist, Hilsa researcher said. Anisur Rahman said, ‘Hilsa is a migratory fish. It constantly swings against the current in a circular motion. So don’t be impatient with the fishermen. Have to wait a bit. As soon as the rainfall and water flow increase, the desired hilsa will fall into the net.

Chandpur Deputy Commissioner Anjana Khan Majlish said the bank accounts of each of the real fishermen of the district, i.e. those who hunt all kinds of fish including hilsa in the big river, will be opened by updating the list. So that the fishermen who have become unemployed under the ban can get financial assistance.

The deputy commissioner said such a proposal has been submitted to the concerned government authorities to improve the living standards of these marginal fishermen.

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