Capital Dhaka continued to lose its most ponds and water bodies in the last three decades due to negligence and lack of supervision, various constructions, occupation and pollution. River and Delta Research Centre in its study found existence of 241 ponds in the city. But the number of those ponds continued dwindling due to filling up for construction of various buildings and other infrastructures.
According to the Bangladesh Environment Conservation Act, 1995, no one would be allowed to fill up the ponds whether they are privately owned or not. Apart from the individual-owned ponds, Dhaka South City Corporation, Dhaka North City Corporation and Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha have not taken any effective initiative to save the state-owned ponds.
The authorities concerned
must take immediate steps to restore
old ponds at various places in the city
All know the water bodies and ponds are very important for a city like capital Dhaka. As surface water level has been declining at an alarming rate, dependence on groundwater has increased lowering the level of groundwater table in capital Dhaka in the last couple of years.
Monsoon rain submerges different areas of Dhaka city every year, creating serious waterlogging as most of the ponds, canals and water bodies around it have disappeared from its map. So, the two city corporations and Rajuk will have to conserve ponds to retain its surface water resources for protecting the environment from further degradation. Besides, necessary excavation and re-excavation, embankments of the ponds would be made concrete. The authorities concurred must take immediate steps to restore old ponds at various places in the city to their original state after freeing them from grabbers. It will also have to make sure that no pond in city gets encroached upon or filled up again. We are concerned that no effective action was taken even though influential people had occupied the ponds in city under the nose of the administration. The authorities concerned are bound to protect and preserve the ponds following the Constitution and the Environmental Conservation Act and take action against the encroachment of hundreds of ponds in the capital Dhaka.