The government constructed a 1.5 km embankment in 2000 to protect crop lands, fish ponds and houses in Kutubnagar and Barikaran areas on the banks of Sugandha river in Jhalokati. Since then, farmer Abdul Halim (50) has been living with his family in the Kutubnagar area of the embankment.
He is constantly struggling with storms and tidal surges. Cyclone Sidr, Aila, Fani, Amphan and Yas broke the embankment in front of his eyes. Now that his house has somehow survived, it has also been submerged in the flood waters. However, there is no way to travel as the dam has broken.
I went to Kutubnagar area on Saturday afternoon and talked to him. He said the dam was repaired but it did not last long. Due to the failure to build a sustainable dam, the embankment was completely destroyed in Yass, although the cyclone caused some damage. Two hundred acres of arable land, one thousand houses, mosques, madrasas, shops and a ferry are under threat.
Farmer Abdul Halim said the embankment was somehow repaired last year. But the embankment was damaged in Cyclone Amphan. This time it is completely broken in Yas. I am worried about such pola-maiya-natigo. With a little tide, all the water is submerged. There is a dip in the water of the crop. There is water in the house, if there is no dam, I will stay in Mora. He demanded a sustainable embankment.
Mozammel Hossain, a local resident, said, “I have a shop on the river bank. There is a situation where the embankment is being broken, God knows when the shops will be closed. Mogo dam hopale just kairadhya kaiyena.
Director of an orphanage in Barikaran ferry area. Rafiqul Islam said the dam broke several times during the cyclone after construction. Reforms were also made again. But how will it last if it is not a sustainable embankment. The dam breaks when the tide rises a little. Now our orphanage and a mosque are under threat. We want sustainable embankments.
According to the Water Development Board, one cyclone after another damaged various parts of the 40 km embankment on the banks of Sugandha and Bishkhali rivers in Jhalokati district. Although repaired from time to time, most of them are unprotected. Cyclone Yas broke about four kilometers of six embankment areas. As a result, houses, crop fields and fish ponds have been flooded. Distressed residents of the river bank are spending miserable nights.
Meanwhile, the embankment of Bishkhali river in Kanthalia upazila has been most damaged due to rising water in cyclone Yas. The three-kilometer embankment of the 9-kilometer embankment has broken and flooded. The local residents are in trouble. Crop fields and houses have been submerged. Water has seeped into various installations.
Besides, extensive damage has been caused in Gabkhan-Dhansinri, Deuri embankment, Krishnakathi area of the upazila and city Hadua area of Bishkhali river in Sadar upazila.
Kanthalia village resident farmer said. Kibria said, the water is rising a lot in one tide. Ehon Beri Vainga is lying on the other side. This has caused a lot of damage to our agriculture. Pepper and dill tuilla can not be taken. Our house is completely submerged in water.
Abdur Rob Khan, a resident of Bishkhali river bank, said, “We are really scared of storms, floods and natural calamities.” Especially at night you have to sit with your children when the house breaks down and goes to the river.
Jhalokati Water Development Board Executive Engineer. Rakib Hossain said 4 km of embankment was damaged in cyclone Yas in Jhalokati district. Three crore rupees is required to repair the damaged dam. An application has already been made to the concerned ministry for allocation. Once allocated, work will be started in the affected areas as soon as possible.