General

Crossing canal on bamboo bridge is a risky affair for Sunamganj villagers

For the 7,000-odd residents of 15 villages in Sunamganj sadar upazila’s Jahangirnagar and Rangarchar unions, daily commute is a daily ordeal.

For the 7,000-odd residents of 15 villages in Sunamganj sadar upazila’s Jahangirnagar and Rangarchar unions, daily commute is a daily ordeal.

In the absence of a proper bridge, the villagers are forced to risk their lives daily while crossing the Dholaikhal canal on a rickety bamboo structure. Their repeated requests to the authorities concerned in the past four years seem to have only fallen on deaf ears.

The only bridge over the canal, residents claim, partially collapsed during the 2011 floods. And the 2017 floods washed it away.

The villages claim they are victims of sheer apathy being deprived of basic transport and communication facilities, despite the tall claims of the local authorities of providing better connectivity in rural areas.

“We suffer the most during monsoon. We are concerned about the safety of our children who use the bridge daily to go to school. Our only demand to the authorities is to build a new bridge at the earliest,” says Hazi Sadeque Mia, a resident of Vairab Hati village.

Freedom fighter Abul Khaleque, a resident of the same village, says the locals have been demanding a proper bridge for long. “From the local MP to government officials, we met all. But no one seems to be bothered about our plight.”

Jahangirnagar Upazila Parishad chairman Mukhshed Ali says he is aware of the problem.

“We know that people of this area have been suffering for a long time. The proposal for a new bridge has long been submitted to the Upazila Project Implementation Office.”

Rangarchar Upazila Parishad chairman Abul Hossain says the area falls under the purview of Jahangirnagar union. “Residents of both unions are bearing the brunt. I will soon discuss the issue with the Upazila Nirbahi Officer.”

Vice Chairman of the Upazila Parishad Advocate Abul Hossain has, however, assured of fast action. “We will soon begin the construction of a bridge in the area.”

Sadar upazila’s project implementation officer Shahadat Hossain, however, says he is not aware of the plight of the local residents. “I have no idea as I recently took charge,” he adds.

Source: United News of Bangladesh