Rash Mela begins Nov 10

KHULNA The Forest Department (East) authorities have

taken special security measures at Alorkol in Dublar Char near the Sundarbans

as the three-day traditional Rash Mela (Rash Festival) is set to begin on

November 10 there, officials said.

They said alongside taking some other measures, a ban has been imposed on

carrying all kinds of meats except chicken, fireworks, explosives, any kind

of domestic weapons and firearms.

Sources said, deer hunting spree usually appears to rise during the

festival every year as hundreds of boats carrying thousands of devotees

throng the festival venue at Alorkol in Dublar Char, close to the coast of

Bay of Bengal, under Sharankhola Range of the mangrove forest.

We had a meeting with the district administration to stop poaching of

deer at any cost during the festival, said Md Mahmudul Hasan, Divisional

Forest Officer (East Division) of the Sundarbans today.

The pilgrims will be allowed to travel to eight selected points during day

time, he said.

Usage of loudspeakers, electronic devices, carrying of firearms and

ammunitions are completely restricted and travelling will be prohibited at

night, he also said.

All preparation has been completed to celebrate the Rash Mela and the Rash

Mela celebration committee has been asked to monitor so that deer hunting

incidents cannot happen during the festival, he added.

Alongside Rapid Action Battalion (RAB), Coast Guard, Bangladesh Navy and

patrol teams of the forest department will be deputed for the protection of

the pilgrims in Pashur, Shewla, Bhola and Shibsa rivers from November 10,

the forest official said.

The forest department has fixed eight river routes from Khulna, Bagerhat,

Satkhira and adjacent Barguna for the pilgrims to travel to the venue, he

said, adding that visitors will have to finish all their activities and leave

the forest area before sunset during the festival.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)