PM for continuing river dredging


Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday asked to continue dredging of all the country’s rivers to bring back the water flow. 

“Besides, remove all sorts of chars from the rivers to protect the banks from severe erosion”, the prime minister was quoted as saying during the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) meeting on the day.

She asked the authorities to introduce capital dredging in big rivers and maintain it.

The Prime Minister gave these instructions while approving the project titled “Protection of Singrabari, Patagram and Baikhola areas under Kazipur upazila of Sirajganj district from erosion of the right bank of river Jamuna” at the Ecnec meeting.

The Ecnec also approved four projects involving Tk 2,459.15 crore. 

The projects were approved at the meeting at the NEC Conference Room in the city's Sher-e-Bangla Nagar area. 

Ecnec Chairperson and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina presided over the meeting.

The Prime Minister joined the meeting from Gonobhaban through video conferencing while some other Ministers and State Ministers, Planning Commission members and secretaries concerned also attended the meeting.

Highlighting the Prime Minister's directive, Planning Division Senior Secretary, Md Ashadul Islam while briefing reporters after the meeting, said “The Prime Minister has asked to dredge the rivers through study. If the river is not dredged regularly, erosion occurs.”

Highlighting the Prime Minister's order regarding the second wave of Corona, he said the second wave of Corona may come in the coming winter. 

“Therefore, everyone should be aware, including regarding wearing a mask so that corona does not spread in the country” he mentioned.

Ashadul said four projects were approved at the meeting. 

The total estimated cost of the four projects is Tk 2,459.15 crore, he added. 

Of the total cost, some Tk 1,669.31 crore will be financed from the government fund, Tk 607.70 crore from foreign loan while the rest Tk 182.14 crore will come from the concerned organization’s own funds, he said.

Among the four approved projects, two projects are fresh while the rest two are revised projects.

Bangladesh Fisheries Development Corporation (BFDC) will implement the project proposal titled ‘Establishment of Dry Fish Processing Industry in Cox's Bazar District between January 2021 and December 2023.

The project aims at optimum use of fish by making value-added products through innovative management to bring additional income for fisher folk.

The estimated cost of the project is Tk 198.79 crore.

Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB) will implement the project titled “Protection of Singrabari, Patagram and Baikhola areas under Kazipur upazila of Sirajganj district from erosion of the right bank of river Jamuna” between October 2020 and June 2023. It will cost 560.07 crore.

Improvement of Panchdona-Danga-Ghorashal Zilla Highways into 4-lane Highway with one layer lowered both side separate service lane (Including Danga Bazar-Islampur link Road).

The first amendment of the Road Transport and Highways Department's project titled “Improvement of Panchdona-Danga-Ghorashal Zilla Highways into 4-lane Highway with one layer lowered both side separate service lane (Including Danga Bazar-Islampur link Road)” has been approved. 

The cost of the amendment has increased by Tk 551.51 crore. The original cost of the project was Tk 937.63 crore. 

Now the cost has increased to Tk 1,489.14 crore. The duration of the project has also increased by 2 years. 

The project, which started in July 2017, was supposed to be completed in June 2020, but has now been extended to June 2022.

The first amendment has been brought in the power department's “Aminbazar-Maowa-Mongla 400 KV transmission line” project. 

The cost of the project has increased by Tk 1,148.78 crore. The original cost of the project was Tk 1,356.59 crore. 

Now its expenditure has increased to Tk 2,505.37 crore. The duration of the project has increased to one and a half years. 

The project, which started in July 2016, was supposed to be completed in June 2020, but now it has been extended to December 2021.