River erosion washes away road in Sunamganj
Gobindaganj-Dashghar road in Sunamganj’s Chhatak upazila has gone into the gorge of the Boterkhola River due to severe erosion, leading to the complete halt of vehicular movement on the road.
A portion of the 500 feet concrete road collapsed into the river in the Singua area of Gobindganj Saider Gao Union last week.
The road served as the lone means of movement of the residents in 50 villages of the upazila. This has been causing immense sufferings to the people.
The affected villages include Krinchnagar, Harinagar, Shyamnagar, Govindanagar, Nakhrakali, Malikandi, Dasghar, Lakshmipur, Bindpur, Barachal, Khalagao, Bhugli, Banarshi, Bagin, Dakshin Para, Uttara Para, Chhaila, Shiran, Alampur, Banglabazar, Digalbak, Nowapara, Srinagar, Kahalla, Auli and others.
The UNB correspondent visited the erosion-affected area recently and found that two sections of the road have collapsed into the river, with the soil beneath it shifting. River erosion has severely affected the paved roads in the past week.
Around 500 feet away from the river bank, a deep hole has formed due to the erosion, posing a grave threat to several educational institutions and hundreds of nearby establishments.
During the previous winter season, locals managed to facilitate vehicle movement in the erosion-prone area by placing trees, bamboo, and sandbags. However, within three months, the river washed away the paved road, rendering their efforts futile.
Amid the dire situation, residents from 50 villages organised separate protest rallies, demanding necessary measures to prevent further erosion.
Last year, officials from the Sunamganj office of Bangladesh Water Development Board visited the erosion site as per the instructions of the Minister for Water Resources. Survey work was conducted to address the issue, but no further progress has been made since then.
Oliur Rahman Chowdhury Bakul, the former chairman of the upazila, said that the road collapsed into the river due to regular traffic and rainfall, despite the efforts made by local residents.
Upazila executive engineer Afsar Ahmed said this road has experienced multiple breakdowns, leading to disrupted communication. He further said that they have already informed the Sunamganj chief engineer and the local government engineering department in writing.
The 8.5 km concrete road was constructed by the Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) from upazila sadar to Gao Union Dasghar in Gobindaganj 16 years ago.