Waterlogging almost halts Chaktai-Khatunganj businesses as projects yet to bear any fruit

07 August, 2023, 12:35 am

Last modified: 07 August, 2023, 12:48 am

The Chattogram Development Authority is implementing two of these projects, while the Water Development Board is implementing one. The Chattogram City Corporation is handling one project.

People involved in the projects said those were not effective due to a lack of co-ordination, lack of proper feasibility study, procrastination, design changes and slow implementation.

“Re-excavation, expansion, renovation and development of canals in Chattogram City to alleviate waterlogging”, a Chattogram Development Authority project involving Tk9,526 crore, is scheduled to end in December this year. The project to reclaim 36 canals, and construct 176km of retaining walls, 45 bridges, drains and footpaths has progressed almost 80%.

The Chattogram Development Authority is also constructing an embankment from Kalurghat Bridge to Chaktai canal alongside the Karnaphuli River at a cost of Tk2,746 crore. The project, scheduled to end in June 2024, has made progress of around 70%.

The Water Development Board’s project, involving Tk1,620 crore, to reduce flood and waterlogging in Chattogram has progressed only around 30% in four years. Under the project, regulators are to be installed at the mouths of 23 canals, and a 19-km-long flood barrier is to be set up on the banks of the Karnaphuli.

Waterlogging in Chattogram. Photo: Mohammad Minhaj Uddin

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Waterlogging in Chattogram. Photo: Mohammad Minhaj Uddin

Waterlogging in Chattogram. Photo: Mohammad Minhaj Uddin

The Chattogram City Corporation’s project to dig a canal from the Baroipara area to the Karnaphuli River at a cost of Tk1,362 crore has not been completed even in nine years. The project was extended to June 2024, but only around 50% of it has been completed.

Chattogram Development Authority chairman Zahirul Alam Dubash said at a press conference on 2 May that there will not be much waterlogging in Chattogram this year. But the city could not withstand the rains of the last few days.

Delwar Majumder, former president of the Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh (IEB), Chattogram Centre, told TBS, “Since these projects were launched, authorities concerned tell people every year that there will be no flooding next year. But the city is inundated every year. That is why people do not trust them now. I do not trust them either.” 

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