NOTHING seems to put an end to the indiscriminate cutting of hills in Chittagong. Builders under the guise of housing projects, which themselves are unauthorized, are extending their claws in and out of Chittagong city. They are committing a double crime, working on unauthorized projects by grabbing lands.
Last year hill cutting between Nasirabad and Hathazari not only went unabated, but stretched as far as Cox's Bazar to make ways for townships. More than a hundred hills of Chittagong city have allegedly been razed in varying degrees in the last three decades in the name of development projects.
Recently as two housing projects named “Shapla Residential Area” and “Model Palli” were developed by razing more than a dozen hills at north Pahartali in Chittagong city, we were appalled to witness how ineffective and helpless our law enforcers have become.Levelling of hills is affecting the eco-system of greater Chittagong with a heightening incidence of landslides.
Let's do first things first. We have a monitoring system in place for bringing our hilly terrains under a scanner and do a thorough stocktaking. Then we undertake well planned and coordinated measures to stem the malaise.
We draw government's urgent attention to the imperative of implementing Bangladesh Environment Preservation act 1995(amended in 2000) together with Bangladesh Building Construction Act of 1952 that prohibit damage to hills.