Water level increases in Padma, erosion intensified in Charghat

Published : 22 Jun 2022 08:59 PM

Due to continuous rainfall and on rush of water from upstream, Padma River near Rajshahi is on the spate. At the same time, with the increase of water in the river, the erosion through the river protection embankment near Charghat upazila of the district has also been intensified.

People living beside the river Padma are spending their days in panic. These people are the victims of river erosion for more than a decade. They have expressed their anger about the inactivity of Water Development Board authorities who have failed to take any pragmatic steps to build a permanent embankment beside the river Padma for the last ten-year. It is learnt that by being the victims of river erosion, several thousand people have already turned homeless and landless and have taken shelter to other places. 

With the increase of water of the river Padma this year, the erosion along the river Padma in four villages under Yousufpur and Charghat Sadar upazila has also been intensified. Affected people complained, there is no activity by the Water Development Board to save the embankment from being eroded. 

Meanwhile, Water Development Board officials informed the project works of Tk 722 crore is continuing to construct a permanent embankment along the river Padma in Charghat upazila. However, they said, it was not possible to start the works in all erosion prone areas of the upazila this year. The works of the project are likely to complete during the next year and after the completion of the works, there will be no erosion of the river Padma. 

WDB further informed the works of saving the infrastructures along the left side of the river in Charghat and Bagha upazilas are continuing. The works will cost Tk 722 crore 24 lakh and 26 thousand.  The project works are likely to be completed by June 2023 but due to litigation in allocation of the fund, the works are being delayed.

It is learnt, new embankment along the river has been constructed in Raotha area of Charghat while erosion along the river has been intensified in neighboring Pirojpur and Chandansahar villages. The old embankment along Yousufpur village is also being eroded. No activities of WDB has been noticed in these affected areas. 

Ziaur Rahman, an affected farmer of village Pirojpur under Charghat alleged their homesteads and cultivable land are being eroded by the river Padma every year but no permanent measure has so far been taken to check the erosion of the river. He further alleged whenever the erosion along the river starts, the officials of WDB become active to check the erosion somehow but no permanent measure is taken save the embankment.

Imdadul Islam of Yousufpur village informed, erosion has been started along the old-embankment of the river Padma. He added, if no prior measure is taken to check erosion this year, many villages including four educational institutions of the upazila might be devoured by the erosion of the river Padma.  

Assistant Engineer of WDB, Rajshahi, Abdur Rashid informed, the water of the river Padma is increasing daily. The project works for checking the erosion are also continuing. The works of repairing the embankment along Yousufpur areas will start from the next season. He further informed, temporary measures of checking erosion along the river would be taken by dumping sand bags along the breached and eroded areas of the embankment.