A Supreme Court lawyer yesterday filed a writ petition with the High Court, seeking its directive on the government to take necessary steps to put a stop to the illegal dock at Gabkhan channel in Jhalakathi.
Barrister Kazi Mynul Hassan submitted the writ petition, also praying to the HC to issue a rule asking authorities concerned to explain why establishment and construction of the illegal dock at Gabkhan channel should not be declared illegal.
The writ sought that shipping secretary, deputy commissioner and superintendent of police of Jhalakathi and joint director (Port) of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA), Barisal Port, be made respondents to the rule.
The SC lawyer filed the writ petition following a report titled “Gabkhan Channel: Narrowed by illegal dock” published in The Daily Star yesterday.
The report said that a part of the century-old Gabkhan channel has been turned into a temporary dock in Jhalakathi Sadar for loading and unloading construction materials for a nearby highway.
As a result, the 18km canal, the country's only man-made naval route, has become narrow at the point, disrupting vessel movement.
Known as the “Suez Canal of Bangladesh”, the Gabkhan channel connects Jhalakathi and Pirojpur, two southern districts. Every day, goods-laden vessels, including international ones, operate on it.
The dock was set up nearly three months ago on the western side of the canal, near Gabkhan Bridge, because of its proximity to the under-construction highway linking Barisal and Khulna. The work is expected to end within December next year.
Barrister Mynul told The Daily Star that the HC may hear on the writ petition today.