Create green belts to protect country from disasters: PM

Create green belts to protect country from disasters: PM


Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Thursday stressed the need for creating green belts through afforestation to protect the country from natural disasters like cyclone and tidal surge.”The only way before us to protect the country from cyclone and tidal surge is to encircle Bangladesh with green belts,” she said.The Prime Minister was addressing a function marking the International Day for Disaster Reduction 2016 at the Osmani Memorial Auditorium in the city.Sheikh Hasina underscored the need for bringing different areas of the country, especially the coastal areas, under green belts as well as go for more green afforestation in costal areas to protect the coastal belt from tidal surge.Referring to the growing trend of death in lightning incidents in recent times, she urged all concerned to plant more palm trees and construct buildings keeping proper earthling facility to avoid such disasters.

Bangladesh has now the capacity to tackle any kind of natural, she said adding, “Disasters will come and we’ll have to face those with courage.”Referring to the movement and hue and cry of many against Rampal Power Plant, she said the government has a plan to plant nearly five lakh trees there to create a green belt and also to sink carbon.Sheikh Hasina vowed that her government will surely take steps so that no one is affected due to disasters in the future. “Our experiences and steps to combat disasters are acclaimed globally.”Earlier, the Prime Minister digitally inaugurated 100 cyclone shelter centres and 53 flood centres which the local people of the respective areas witnessed live on Bangladesh Television.Bangladesh as a disaster-prone country for its geographical location has to face many disasters and risks every now and then, Sheikh Hasina said adding “If we remain alert and take proper steps in right time, then we’ll be able to face any kind of disaster.”About the global warming, the Prime Minister said, it is a new kind of disaster which also has to face adding that the government has taken all necessary measures so that the people of Bangladesh do not have to suffer due to disasters in the future.Sheikh Hasina said the lives and livelihood of people are now at stake due to increase of cyclone, flood, draught, water logging, landslide and riverbank erosion and decrease of navigability of rivers.Besides, there are risks of earthquakes in Bangladesh due to its geographical locations, over-population and impacts of climate change, she said.Highlighting the success of her government in tackling the 1997 cyclone and the longest flood in the history of Bangladesh in 1998 when more than 70 percent areas went under floodwater, she said not a single person died without food at that time.Hasina said such government efforts proved the prediction of various international media like BBC and CNN as false and baseless in which they said nearly two crore people would die in the flood-affected areas.She said her government had established ‘Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief’ as a separate ministry while the Disaster Management Act was passed by parliament in the same year to effectively face disasters.The government formulated National Disaster Management Plan 2010-2015 and Bangladesh Climate Change Strategy and Action Plan-BCCSAP to face the disasters due to climate change as well as formed Climate Change Trust Fund to implement the plan, she said.Disaster Management and Relief Minister Mofazzal Hossain Chowdhury Maya, Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on the ministry Dhirendra Debnath Shambhu and Secretary of the Ministry Mohammad Shah Kamal also spoke on the occasion. Director General of the Department of Disaster Management Md Riaz Ahmed delivered the address of welcome.


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