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Govt. blamed silent about coastal people

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Staff Reporter

Eighteen rights based coastal organizations on Saturday criticized the government for what they said its inaction in protecting coastal people from recent floods and tidal surges.

“Government’s silence on this issue (coastal catastrophes due to flood caused by tidal surge) is a human right violation while coastal people has the right to live as the country’s citizen,” said AHM Bazlur Rahman of Bangladesh NGO Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC).

His remarks came at a human chain organized by the 18 organizations outside the National Press Club.

The organizations included BNNRC, Online Knowledge Society, United People Trust, Unnayan Dhara Trust, Coastal Protection Movement, EquityBD, Kishani Shova, Charfassion Shorif Para Ekota Songho and Coastal Development Partnership.

Leaders of the organizations demanded immediate steps to protect coastal people from natural disasters.

Aminur Rasul of Unnayan Dhara Trust said if coastal people keep coming to the densely populated capital for employment losing their lands for river erosion, it will cause a social disaster.

Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of COAST and EquityBD said government and donor agencies have spent about Tk 2000 crore in the name of climate trust and resilience funds, but money is hardly allocated or spent for protecting coastal lands and people.

Sawkat Ali Tutul of COAST Trust placed eight points specific demands which include emergency allocation for immediate maintenance of embankments, developing fast and transparent tender process of Water Development Board (WDB) and reducing system loss and deployment of army and use their expertise in critical places as necessary.