In the name of development, Dhaka’s water bodies have been destroyed- Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheik Hasina
By Adnan Mahfuz
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the “Pani Bhaban (New building of Bangladesh Water Development Board) through a video conference on Thursday morning (01/10/2020).
During the inauguration speech, she said, “In the name of development, the water bodies of Dhaka have been destroyed. Wherever the development work is, the water bodies must be maintained, it will maintain the natural balance.”
On January 31, 2015, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina laid the foundation stone of ‘Pani Bhaban’. The ‘Pani Bhaban’ project was undertaken with the policy-oriented aim of creating a modern working environment in implementing the centennial ‘Deltaplan-2100’, including tackling various disasters caused by adverse climate change.
Later, with the consent, approval, and advice of the Prime Minister, ‘Pani Bhaban’ has been fully implemented.
According to a press release issued by the Ministry of Water Resources, Bangladesh on Wednesday (September 30, 2020), the then East Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority (EPWAPDA) was set up on the recommendations of the Krug Mission under the auspices of the United Nations after the 1954 and 1955 severe floods.
This was then established to develop water resources and power management, including irrigation, flood control of then East Pakistan. After the independence of Bangladesh, in 1972, an independent body called Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWBD) was formed with the ‘Water Wing’ of EPWAPDA.
The 420,000-square-foot building, designed by the Water Development Board’s engineers, took about four and a half years.
The central air-conditioned of ‘Pani Bhaban’ has eco-friendly facilities like solar panels, a sewage treatment plant, a rainwater reservoir, an auditorium with 536 people, a helipad of 4500 square feet, state-of-the-art fire-fighting system including 376 car parking.
Besides, the pond (21,484 sq ft) in memory of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has been preserved in the complex, and a reservoir of 20,625 sq ft has been constructed.