Kapotakkha dredging project raises hope among locals

Kapotakkha dredging project raises hope among locals

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The 262-crore Kapotakkha River dredging project is now nearing completion, raising hope among the people living in its vicinity that there will be a better life for them soon.Once implemented fully, it will lead to creation of more arable land and fishing prospects. Around 12 lakh people in Jessore, Khulna and Satkhira districts are expected to be saved from flashfloods and water-logging problem during the rainy season.Amid the looming prospect, local people are eagerly looking forward to the full completion of this river dredging project hoping that it will allow them to lead a comfortable life along the banks of the river as there will be no water-logging in their areas.Project Background The Tk 261.55 crore project was undertaken in October 2011, aiming to solve the longstanding water-logging problem in the Kapotakkha River basin.The main phases of the project are to manage tide at Pakhimara Beel in Jamalpur and Kheshra union of Tala upazila in Satkhira district and 90-km long river dredging work.Though the project was scheduled to be completed by June 2015, it could not be finished in due time for various complications.Current Scenario Md Shamim Ahsan, a first-class contractor of Khulna, have been conducting the dredging works of the river from Satkhira’s Sadar Bridge in Tala Upazila to Mela Bazar. During an investigation by the UNB correspondent, it was found that eight excavators and two dredgers are being used to remove soil for a 1-km long dredging area.Besides, dredging work on 32-km long area on the Kapilmuni Bazar-Tala-Patkelghata-Kamalpur-Keshabpur route is now going on in full swing, with the contracting firm claiming that 80 percent of the dredging work is already complete.
However, the authorities have failed to initiate the tidal river management, TRM project for Kapotakkha River, due to legal complications.Leyakat Hossain, chairman of Kheshra union, has said, the TRM work will start very soon and the water-logging problem will get resolved.
Akhil Kumar Biswas, engineer of Water Development Board Jessore branch, told UNB that the project’s timeline has been extended till June 2016. Currently, dredging has been completed over 34 km area out of 85 km. But, there is no enough space to store soil extracted from the river, which is hampering the project work. -UNB, Khulna

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