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Khulna’s Koyra villages threatened by riverbank erosion

Khulna’s Koyra villages threatened by riverbank erosion

Around 42,000 people of 17 villages under Uttar and Dakhhin Bedkashi unions in Koyra upazila are passing their days in panic as erosion by the Shakbaria and Kabadak rivers has taken a serious turn.

The villagers fear that the unions will get disconnected from the upazila headquarters soon and turn into an island as the embankment that links the unions to the upazila headquarters will go into gorges of the rivers if the local administration does not take any immediate step to check the erosion.

Although local politicians and representatives of upazila administration were informed about the current condition of the unions, no action has been taken yet, alleged the villagers.

Contacted, Moshiur Rahman, regional officer of Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB), said they have nothing to do right now as there is no government allocation to take any project in this regard.

Harunur Rashid, a resident of Shakbari village, said Wapda town protection embankment at Gabbunia village is used as a road, and this the only way to communicate with the upazila headquarters and other areas. “But, now this road also stands threatened following the worsening riverbank erosion,” he added.

Local MP advocate Sheikh Nurul Haque said he raised the issue at the Jatiya Sangsad in addition to bringing it to the notice of the higher BWDB officials.

He expects that a strong and sustainable dam will be built soon to save the people of the areas.

JM Moshin Reza, former chairman of Koyra upazila parishad and president of Koyra upazila Awami League, said the embankment that connects the unions with the upazila headquarters was earlier repaired by local volunteers.

UP members Harsit Mandal and Nilima Chakraborty said 13 villages of Dakkhin Bedkashi union and four villages of Uttar Bedkashi had turned into an island in 1970 due to the constant riverbank erosion. Later, an embankment on the rivers was built in 1974. Now, the embankment is facing a serious threat due to the erosion by the two rivers.