Monster made of plastic waste spreads awareness at Cox's Bazar beach

A monster made out of plastic waste stands tall at Sugandha point of the sea beach in Cox's Bazar. Photo taken on Thursday, 15 December, 2022 afternoon.Prothom Alo

The tourists visiting Cox’s Bazar now will come across a unique, 38-feet tall and 14-feet wide monster made out of plastic waste, standing on the sea beach with the message of how plastic pollution around them reached such an intimidating scale.

Volunteers worked for seven days to bring the statue to life designed by Abir Karmakar, a former student of the Fine Arts faculty at Dhaka University under an anti-plastic initiative of the Bidyanondo Foundation, reports UNB.

The huge monster placed at Sugandha Point of the beach has attracted a lot of attention from locals and visiting tourists already. Plastic waste like chips packets, water bottles, broken buckets, chairs, and balls has been used in creating the awareness-raising monster.

Nadira Kanon, a tourist from Dhaka said, “It’s great to see such an initiative taken in Bangladesh’s Cox’s Bazar as we should all be aware to stop the plastic monster. We have to make people see that plastic waste is actually wreaking havoc on the oceans.”

Abir Karmakar, who designed the statue, said 20 sacks of plastic waste collected from Cox’s Bazar and Saint Martin’s island have been used in creating this monster.

Eight volunteers including him along with four carpenters worked hard for the last seven days to build this monster aimed at raising awareness among people against plastic waste and its repercussions, he said.

The district administration along with Bidyanondo Foundation is trying to convey a message that the accumulated plastic waste and its pollution is turning into a monster day by day and posing a great risk for lives and the environment, said deputy commissioner of Cox’s bazar Muhammad Shaheen Imran.

He said the statue will be kept there on the beach for the next two months as part of the awareness campaign.

Bidyanondo Foundation organisers said a team of their volunteers had been campaigning to collect plastic waste at Saint Martin’s Island for the last few days.

On Tuesday, the first day of the campaign locals brought four metric tonnes of plastic waste which was brought by 400 local families at the ‘Plastic Exchange Store’ set up by the organisers.

In exchange, they took rice, pulse, oil, sugar, salt, clothes and other essentials worth Tk 420,000, said the organisers. Each family will get the chance to exchange plastic waste for essential commodities once every month from this unique store, they said.