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Kanmona-haraboti Canal in Joypurhat: Green belt project uncertain as criminals uproot 1500 trees

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Sunday, July 14, 2013

Our Correspondent, Dinajpur


Huge saplings lie idle on the office premises of Barind Multipurpose Development Authority in Kalia upazila under Joypurhat district as the organisation, presently implementing a project to plant 40 thousand trees on the banks of Kanmona-Haraboti canal in the upazila, suspended the task after criminals uprooted 1500 saplings that had been planted early this month. PHOTO: STAR



The project of Barind Multipurpose Development Authority (BMDA) to make a green belt on both sides of Kanmona-Haraboti canal in Kalai upazila of Joypurhat district has become uncertain amid sabotage by a local vested interest group. As part of a plan to plant 40,000 saplings of wood, fruit and medicinal trees on the both sides of Kanmona-Haraboti canal, the BMDA planted around 1500 saplings there in early July.

But men of the vested interest group allegedly belonging to Amrita Sarker Jewel and Shibli Sarker uprooted the plants, forcing the authorities to suspend the tree plantation. The 12.5km Kanmona-Haraboti canal starts from Chhatragram and ends at Roir village in Kalai upazila. Earlier local land grabbers filled up large portions of the canal bed.

Recently the Barind authority excavated the 12.5km canal spending Tk 1 crore as per decision of Kalai upazila administration to restore its water flow. The authorities also decided to plant trees on both sides of the canal.

But some local influential people including Amrita Sarker Jewel and Shibli Sarker started opposing the tree plantation since it started in early July and finally uprooted the trees, locals said. When contacted, Amrita and Shibli claimed that the land belongs to them and they want to produce vegetables there.

“Nobody has the right to do anything here,” said Amrita. Md Abu Sufiyan, deputy assistant engineer of Kalai upazila chapter of Barind Multilateral Development Authority, admitted the incident of uprooting the 1,500 saplings by unscrupulous people.

“We took the initiative to plant trees to protect the canal from any further damage and maintain ecological balance in the area. Besides, the locals would be benefited when the trees mature,” he said. Barind authorities are now worried about the large number of saplings they had purchased earlier to plant on the canal banks.



Source: thedailystar



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