A MEDIA report says the government has undertaken a project to dredge 24 major river routes by June 2018. A total 101.4 million cubic metre areas will be dredged at a cost of Tk 18.73 billion. On completion of the project, heavy water vessels will be able to ply all year round. It will also facilitate movement of passengers and goods at a minimum cost.
However, if the major rivers are dredged small rivers will dry up in the dry season, from November to May. As a consequence, water transport, fish culture as well as irrigation will face problems.
To reap full benefits from the dredging work, the tributaries connected to the major rivers should be included in the dredging project.
A supplementary project needs to be undertaken in order to include dredging of small rivers. It will facilitate irrigation of agricultural lands, plying of boats and fish culture in all seasons.
The Bangladesh Water Development Board can undertake another supplementary dredging project to dredge small rivers. We cannot address one crucial problem while creating another.
Md. Ashraf Hossain
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