National Committee to Protect Sundarbans Convenor Sultana Kamal has alleged the government is hiding the correct information about the Rampal coal-fired power plant project from the public.
Addressing a press conference at Dhaka Reporters Unity on Wednesday, she said the government has been making untrue statements regarding the proposed Rampal plant at home and abroad.
Criticising the government for allowing the Indian Exim Bank to finance it, she said the bank has been financing the project ignoring all norms and regulations.
“This money they are spending is not from their pocket. It is from the deposits of their people which is being spent for destroying Sundarbans. This is clearly a betrayal of deposit,” she said.
She alleged the government is not providing the correct information about the deal signed with the Indian Exim Bank for Rampal project. “From the statements of the government it seems they will inject poison into our body and then they will take the measures as well so that it will not harm our body,” she said.
The press conference was also addressed, among others, by Dhaka University’s Prof Badrul Imam, Prof MM Akash, National Committee to Protect Sundarbans’ member secretary Dr. Abdul Matin and member Sharif Jamil.
US-resident Indian coal expert Ranjit Shah, appearing in the conference through Skype, said it’s a totally wrong idea that a coal-fired power plant will not be harmful for the environment. He referred to his long working experience in 50 coal-fired power plants in this regard.
Shah also pointed out some features of the Rampal power plant project that are not even compliant with international rules and standards of organizations like the IFC, the World Bank’s private sector arm, and the World Health Organization, contradicting the government’s repeated assurances that the plant will meet the highest international standards.