Editorial

Farmland disappearing fast

Implement the proposed ‘Agricultural Land (Appropriate Use and Conservation) Bill’


Bangladeshpost
Published : 14 May 2022 09:46 PM

Approximately 80,000 hectares of arable land disappears from the country every year. All these lands are going into the hands of non agriculture sector like housing, industrialisation and other purposes under the very nose of the authorities concerned.

By filling croplands, residential dwellings, roads, various infrastructures like high rise buildings, factories, industries, hotels, resorts and other business establishments are being built there indiscriminately across the country. Besides, brick kilns are also destroying the arable lands in many ways alongside polluting the environment.

According to the ministry of environment, forest and climate change, the amount of cultivable land in the country in 1982-1983 was 9.15 million hectares. In 2017-18 the amount of cultivable land stood at 8.02 million hectares. A total of one million hectares of arable land was lost in the last 45 years.


If this trend is not stopped immediately, the country will face serious 

difficulties in ensuring food security for its growing population in the future


If this trend is not stopped immediately, the country will face serious difficulties in ensuring food security for its growing population in the future. As our country is  largely depended on agriculture, we cannot think any alternative option but the agricultural economy for the country’s sustainable development.

Bangladesh is progressing ahead and soon it will be a middle income country from the lower middle income. But the government’s goal will not be sustainable if the country does not have enough land to produce its own food. 

Therefore, the government must pay attention to protecting farmland for the development of sustainable agriculture. All concerned must be more conscious as the country’s crop productivity will come down drastically due to continuous declining of arable land. To this end, the government will have to undertake a combined planning by annexing urban agriculture with the mainstream agriculture so that the country can face the future challenges.

Therefore, we hope that government will approve the proposed ‘Agricultural Land (Appropriate Use and Conservation) Bill’ and implement it strictly as early as possible. Once the law comes into force, agricultural land cannot be used for any purpose other than agricultural work or rented or leased or transferred in any other way.

The "Agricultural Land (Appropriate Use and Conservation) Bill" was placed at Jatiya Sangsad on March 31 to ensure proper use and protection of agricultural land. Therefore, we believe when the law comes into force, our crop land will be protected.