Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) has launched a drive to remove wastages including polythene from the Buriganga by operating three newly-collected long boom excavators.
Shipping minister Shahjahan Khan inaugurated the drive on the Buringanga adjacent to Shyambazar in the capital Tuesday.
BIWTA sources said about 31,500 cubic meter wastage would be removed from this part of the river after the drive.
Three new long boom excavators have been collected from Japan for this purpose at a cost of 56.7 million taka. Wastages from the Buriganga, Turag and Balu rivers will also be removed in phases. On removal of wastages from the rivers, their navigability will be brought back.
Earlier, about 8.5 lakh metric tonnes of wastage was removed from the Buriganga during present government’s tenure.
While inaugurating the drive, Shahjahn Khan said, “The present government has collected three new dredgers for dredging rivers. A mammoth project of 11,473 crore taka has been undertaken for dredging 53 rivers.”
Eleven more dredgers will also be collected soon for the purpose, the minister says.
Besides, construction of 15-km Buriganga embankment, walkways including eco-park is underway. There is a plan to construct 110-km walkway around the rivers in Dhaka city.
Through eviction of 1,718 illegal establishments from the banks of the rivers, about 103 acres of land has been reclaimed.
Shahjahan Khan said people’s awareness has been created to keep the rivers free from pollution. Efforts are underway to discourage people from dumping wastages of households, industries and tanneries.
While speaking, BIWTA chairman Dr Shamsuzzoha Khandakar said this is for the first time three new long boom excavators have been added to the BIWTA fleet with the help of Bashundhara Dredging Company Limited (BDCL).
It may be mentioned here that Bashundhara CSD – 1 and Bashundhara CSD – 2 of BDCL fleet are now engaged in dredging for improved and smooth navigability of Sadarghat to Berulia and Ashulia River routes in the river Turag under the project “Dredging on 12 important river routes” of BIWTA.
Basically this navigation route is on the part of the project of Dhaka circular waterways which is a dream project of the government. The Minister for Shipping Mr. Shahjahan Khan praised the activities of BDCL dredging fleet in the project area. He expressed his satisfaction to see the progress of the project.
“I do believe Bashundhara Dredging Company Limited is very much capable to execute the Dhaka circular waterways project successfully”, he said.
The present government has undertaken initiatives to bring back navigability of rivers through effective dredging system, he said.
Among others, BIWTA officials including Member (Engineering) Firoz Ahmed, Chief Engineer (Dredging) Md Abdul Matin, and Director (Port) Shafiqul Islam were present the occasion.