The High Court yesterday directed the government to take immediate steps to stop filling Dumni canal on the capital's eastern outskirts.
It also issued a rule asking the respondents to explain in four weeks why they should not be directed to restore the canal and bring its original shape back.
Secretaries to the ministries of environment and forests, and land, Dhaka North City Corporation mayor, Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha (Rajuk) as well as its chairman, and officer-in-charge of Khilkhet Police Station have been made the respondents.
The HC passed the order and rule after hearing a writ petition filed by Dr Sheikh Faridul Islam, an environmentalist and resident of Khilkhet, seeking necessary orders to take steps to save Dumni canal from land grabbers. He submitted the petition as a public interest litigation following a report published in The Daily Star under the headline “A canal on deathbed” on last December 24.
The report said the natural Dumni canal that nourished local agriculture and ecology for decades on the city's eastern outskirts was being filled up to make way for real estate development. Advocate Hasnat Quaiyum and Advocate Aynunnahar appeared for the petitioner.