Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) observed the World Water Day (WWD) on March 22 with six other organizations by holding a human chain in front of the National Press Club of Bangladesh in the capital Dhaka. Organizations that joined the program are Bangladesh Water Integrity Network (BAWIN), Save the Sundarbans, Bangladesh Poribesh Andolon (BAPA), Bangladesh Water Partnership, NGO Forum and Center For Human Rights Movement.
Water for Life and Livelihood: Ensure transparency and accountability for conserving aquatic wealth of ‘Posur’ including all rivers was the theme of this year s WWD observation.
While expressing his concern over illegal river-grabbing, river pollution and gradual decline of sweet water sources, TIB Executive Director Dr. Iftekharuzzaman said that the lack of accountability and transparency in water management and aquatic wealth conservation system has resulted in illegal possession of water bodies. The situation
further worsened by emission of poisonous industrial wastage endangering both food and livelihood security, he added. The effects of climate change in Bangladesh s southern districts are being visible already with increasing salinity in the agricultural lands which is likely to create food crises in future, added Iftekharuzzaman.
He questioned the decision to set up a coal-fired thermal power station near the Poshur River of Khula-Bagerhat region without properly assessing the environmental impacts and also contested the decision to use of Poshur river for transporting coal required for the thermal power station.
All these will lead to deterioration of the biodiversity, ecological balance of the Sundarbans and will also pose threat to the sweet water sources , he said.
TIB Executive Director also called upon the government to assess the environmental viability about the proposed thermal power station to be built in Rampal and demanded ensuring integrity and accountability in the country’s water resources management system.