Toxic waste chokes Louhajang river | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, April 02, 2010 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, April 02, 2010

Toxic waste chokes Louhajang river

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The colour of the river Louhajang behind BSCIC industrial area in Tangail testifies how recklessly toxic liquids and waste from industries have been dumped into the water body day after day. The photo was taken recently. Photo: Star

The Louhajang river, a tributary of Dhaleswari in Tangail, has turned extremely poisonous due to rampant dumping of toxic industrial waste.
The water is unusable and pollution is now threatening aquatic life, crops and the greenery, locals said.
The local administration can do nothing in this regard as the industries, responsible for the pollution, have obtained permission from Directorate of Environment (DoE) for dumping waste into the river, they alleged.
During a recent visit to Taratia, Bhatkura, Khudirampur villages under Tangail sadar upazila The Daily Star correspondent saw for himself the smelly and pitch-black water.
People of those villages said they cannot use the water even for washing clothes.
Sahera Begum, a housewife of Taratia, said her three children and she have skin diseases as they have no alternative but to use the river water.
Ripon Miah and Shamim Ahmed of Bhatkhura and Khudirampur said boro paddy fields around the river are dying due to lack of water, as the water cannot be used for irrigation.
Even cattle suffer from diarrhoea if they drink this water, he added.
The industry authorities, however, denied the allegations and said they had already installed effluent treatment plants by spending crores of taka.
They also claimed that the water released from their industries is not at all hazardous.
Sirajul Islam, chairman of the Environmental Science and Resources Management Department of Maulana Bhasani University of Science and Technology, told The Daily Star no crops can grow and no aquatic life can survive in such water.
Meanwhile, Sushasaner Jannya Procharabhijan, a non-government organisation, has recently conducted a survey in the district and identified two industries for polluting Louhajang river.
The organisation also formed a human chain and held demonstration before they submitted memorandum to the deputy commissioner.
Tangail Deputy Commissioner M Bazlul Karim Chowdhury told The Daily Star that he had already informed the Directorate of Environment about the matter.

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