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BGB’s intervention halts Ashrayan project work in Panchagarh

Work to construct homes for the underprivileged under Prime Minister’s Ashrayan Project in Tentulia upazila of Panchagarh had to be halted almost as soon as it got underway on Tuesday, following a late intervention by the Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) claiming ownership over the land.

Construction of the homes for the landless, on a stretch of land along the highway adjacent to Dahuk river in Buraburi union of Tentulia, was inaugurated on Tuesday.

Tentulia Upazila Nirbahi Officer Shohag Chandra Saha said the construction alongside rehabilitation activities for 450 landless people of Tentulia Upazila started in the 2021-22 fiscal, under the special initiative of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s Ashrayan Project-2.

The local administration had worked to allocate the listed government-owned lands for the initiative, UNO Shohag said.

He also said the land of Buraburi Union is listed at ‘No. 1 on the government’s ledger’. Accordingly work began Tuesday morning to build houses initially for 35 landless people.

But shortly after the inauguration, BGB intervened and put a halt on the work, according to the UNO.

Chairman of Buraburi Union Tareq Hossain said some six houses had already been built on the land earlier. “The BGB Welfare Trust’s land is separate. Now after suspending work they are talking about coordination,” he added.

Meanwhile, Major Abu Saleh Ahmed, the BGB acting commander who voiced the BGB’s claim, refused to answer questions about the suspension of the Ashrayan project or ownership of the land in question when confronted by reporters.

BGB 18 Battalion’s Acting Commander Major Abu Saleh Ahmed apparently claimed that the land had been bought by the BGB Welfare Trust.

BGB members on guard also blocked the entry of vehicles carrying bricks for construction work.

That governmental land was not acquired by BGB or BGB Welfare Trust. BGB Welfare Trust is a private organization that has occupied government’s land, said the UNO Shohag.

“We did not expect a government agency’s objection to building homes for the landless,” he said, adding that the work has been suspended for the time being.

“We sought the cooperation of BGB in implementing this initiative of the Prime Minister. Hopefully after overcoming all the complications, we will be able to start working again soon.”

Source: United News of Bangladesh