Report steps taken to protect Halda dolphins | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, May 29, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:37 AM, May 29, 2020

Report steps taken to protect Halda dolphins

HC asks govt during virtual hearing

The High Court yesterday wanted to know what steps the committee led by the deputy commissioner of Chattogram has taken to protect biodiversity, environment, fishes and dolphins in Halda river in the district.

During a virtual hearing on a writ petition, the court ordered the DC to submit a report before it in the next 15 days, stating the steps taken by the committee to this effect. The HC also directed the DC to explain in the same report why a dolphin from Halda River died on May 24.

The HC bench of Justice Obaidul Hassan set June 18 for passing further orders on this issue, Deputy Attorney General Amit Talukder told The Daily Star.

During the court proceedings, writ petitioner Barrister Abdul Qaium Liton placed a report published in The Daily Star's online edition on May 24 before the HC, saying that a dead giant dolphin of around 70kg was recovered from Halda River -- even after the court formed a committee to protect dolphins and the biodiversity of the river.

He prayed to the HC to pass an order in this regard.

Attorney General Mahbubey Alam represented the state during the hearing.

During hearing of the same writ petition, the HC on May 19 formed the committee headed by the Chattogram DC in order to protect the biodiversity, environment and aquatic life of the Halda River in the district.

The lawmakers elected from the areas near the banks of the river will act as advisers to the DC-led committee, and the committee will work with advice from the members of parliament, the HC said in the order.

In the order, the HC asked the DC to include representatives from the DC, superintendent of police, naval police, coast guard, DoE, fisheries, water development board and forest office in Chattogram, upazila nirbahi officers of Hathazari and Ramnagar of the district, and representatives from Marine Science and Fisheries Facility of Chattogram in the committee to protect biodiversity, environment, fishes and dolphins of Halda River.

Abdul Qaium has submitted the writ petition as a public interest litigation to the HC on May 12 saying that 24 dolphins in Halda river were killed since 2017 endangering the environment and ecology, according to a report published on The Daily Star on May 8.

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