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11:47 pm | June 12, 2024
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the kohelia river in moheskhali coxs bazar, dying gradually
Aivee Akther Environmental Problems Natural Environment

The Kohelia river in Moheskhali Cox’s Bazar, dying gradually

The Kohelia river in Moheskhali Cox’s Bazar, dying gradually


Environmentalists have demanded to live the Kohelia River in Moheshkhali of Cox’s Bazar. Concerned parties are saying that the river is filling in the name of so-called development. The Kohelia River cannot save unless immediate action.

The speakers talked about these while attending a press conference titled ‘Rights of Kohelia River’ held at Sagar-Runi Auditorium in Dhaka.

At the press conference, the Waterkeepers Bangladesh and the নদী রক্ষায় জাতীয় জোট (National River Protection Coalition) informed that Mir Akter Hossain Limited, a construction firm, had already started road construction work by filling a 7.4 km section of the Kohelia river.

This road construction is to transport goods to the coal power plants site at Matarbari in Cox’s Bazar. The people’s livelihood on both sides of the Kohelia River is suffering.

In a written statement, Sharif Jamil, coordinator of Waterkeepers Bangladesh and member secretary of the National Rivers Alliance, said,

“More than two thousand poor fisher families living in the four unions of Moheshkhali (Kalarmarchhara, Dhalghata, Matarbari, and Hoanak). And they are making a living along the Kohelia river.”

“With the commencement of the road construction, the families of the fishermen have been severely affected. The Moheshkhali and Matarbari areas are significant for the country’s salt industry.

An average of 20/25 salt boats used to ply this river daily for four/five months in a year. Due to heavy industrialization and river flooding, salt farmers and related small and medium traders have also suffered,” he added.

“Two inspection teams from Waterkeepers Bangladesh and the National River Alliance have observed the area adjacent to the river to investigate the issue of construction of roads by filling up the Kohelia River,” he further said.

“In the Moheshkhali-Matarbari area, a large part of the Kohelia river has already flooded. In the Yunuskhali area, about two kilometers of the river has filled, and this river’s navigation disrupts.

And also no fishing boats or salt-carrying vessels can now navigate the river, convenient for communication and trade with Cox’s Bazar and other parts of Chattagram” he informed.

 He continued that some local people are suffering from waterlogging as the river is already filling up the adjacent natural canals and Swiss gates.

Mujibur Rahman Hawladar, Former chairman of the National River Protection Commission, said in a statement,

“There are laws to protect the river since the British rule. The government has many responsibilities starting from the local administration. It is necessary to protect the Kohelia river by enforcing the law as per the order of the High Court and the Supreme Court.

Abu Bakar, general secretary of the Kohelia River Protection Committee in Moheshkhali, said, “We have made many movements and protests to protect the Kohelia river.

The Kohelia River is associated with the livelihood of four and a half million people. If the river fills up, the people involved will be in danger. The land for salt production will destroy. “

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