A fire broke out at the east Sundarbans located under the Sharankhola upazila at 11:00am on 3 May. The forest department has been investigating the origin of the fire.
Officials said forest department staff and fire brigade personnel were trying to bring the wildfire under control. They said a 1.5km fire line (littering forest floor with soil to interrupt spread of fire) was created to control the fire.
Deputy assistant director of Fire Service and Civil Defence’s Bagerhat station, Md Golam Sarwar told Prothom Alo that news about fire at the Sundarbans reached them at about 11:00am. Instantly, one unit of fire fighters from Sharankhola station rushed to the spot to douse the fire.
He added that the impact of the fire could not be learnt immediately as the mobile network was weak in the area of fire. This hampered communications with the fire fighters.
Divisional forest officer of the Sundarbans East Division, Mohammad Belayet Hossain, told Prothom Alo over the phone that at around 11:00am, some forest guards first spotted smoke rising within 1 kilometer radius of the Daser Bharani Forest Camp under Sharankhola range. “From noon, forest guards and fire fighters along with local people were trying to douse the fire,” he said.
Citing that the part of the Sundarbans that caught fire was covered mostly by shrubs and grass, Belayet said, “We hope the fire will be brought under control soon.”
Earlier on 8 February, a fire at Dhansagar station under Chandpai range of the Sundarbans East Division had burnt down at least four decimals of forestland.