Dhaka – Police on Friday stopped rawhide supply to the city’s Hazaribagh areas as the tannery owners ignored the deadline to shift their factories to the designated estate in Savar, UNB news agency reported.
“We stopped rawhide supply to Hazaribagh today (Friday) following a directive from the Industries Ministry,” said officer-in-charge of Hazaribagh Police Station Alimuzzaman.
There was a directive from the ministry that no rawhide supply will be allowed into Hazaribagh after March 31, he told UNB.
The government has taken the harsh action as the tanners missed many deadlines to relocate their tanneries.
On February 28 last, Industries Minister Amir Hossain Amu in parliament warned that no rawhide will be allowed to enter the Hazaribagh tanneries from April.
He also said the Savar tannery estate would go into operation in full swing within March-April.
Earlier in January last, the minister instructed the Bangladesh Small and Cottage Industries Corporation (BSCIC) to shut down the tanneries that would fail to shift their tanneries to Savar within 72 hours.
As the 72-hour deadline expired, the government served legal notices on the owners of 28 tanneries.
The government initially took the three-year project in 2003 to set up the industrial park to relocate some 205 tanneries from Hazaribagh considering the health and environment hazards, but the implementation of the project missed several deadlines.
The government allotted 155 plots at the 200-acre leather estate among tanners and provided them Tk 250 crore as compensation for shifting their industrial units.
Some 21,000 cubic metres of untreated toxic waste are released every day from the Hazaribagh tanneries into the Buriganga River, posing a serious risk to human and animal health, as per a recent report of Poribesh Bachao Andolon (POBA).