Expressing concern over setting up of a coal-based power plant at Nishanbaria union of Barguna, Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) said the plant will pose risk to the ecology and livelihood of locals.
In a written statement, TIB urged the authorities to immediately stop installation of the power plant -- which has no clearance from Department of Environment, land acquisition, torture on land owner and harassment on locals.
Iso Tech Electrification Company Ltd and Power China are jointly setting up the power plant.
Executive Director of TIB Dr Iftekharuzzaman said though the court has put injunction over land acquisition following a case filed by victims, activities of the project have resumed with the help of administration and police.
Locals who filed cases for compensation are being implicated in false extortion cases, threatened and even being assaulted, says a press release.
Iftekharuzzaman said there is a legal binding of carrying out environmental impact assessment by a neutral, independent and renowned organisation in case of setting up such a facility but it has not been done. Moreover, without taking clearance certificate from Department of Environment, the power plant is being set up near Tengragiri Forest, which is known as the second Sundarbans, he said.
“If the coal-fired plant is set up, it will destroy local biodiversity, especially the sanctuary of animals,” Iftekharuzzaman said.
Though the land is classified as "Khas" (government) land, some brokers introduced them as owners of the land and are selling those to the companies at much cheaper rate than the government price, said TIB.
Terming the project “suicidal”, Iftekharuzzaman called upon the government to cancel the project.