Tk 95 lakh washing away
In September, geo bags were placed within 300 metres of Karkhana river in Patuakhali's Baufal upazila to protect from river erosion.
Water Development Board (WDB) implemented the project at a cost of Tk 95 lakh, through an agency named Messers Lutfar Rahman. Almost Tk 1 crore of public money were used for this project, which WDB claimed will protect villagers from river erosion.
But barely a month after, these sand bags are disappearing into the river, washing away the tall claims of the WDB authorities.
After visiting Kachipara union of Baufal upazila, this correspondent saw that most of the geo bags were devoured by the river, while the rest were severely damaged.
Sand was coming out from some bags.
Saidul, a local resident, alleged that sand was not properly filled in the bags.
"A geo bag needs at least 150kg of sand. But most of these bags had a maximum of 120kg of sand in it," he claimed.
Due to this, hundreds of people living by the river banks are currently living in a vulnerable condition.
Contacted, Lutfar Rahman, contractor of the project, said, "No irregularity has been done. Geo bags were dropped in the damaged area as per rules."
Arif Hossain, executive engineer of Patuakhali WDB, said, "This was never a permanent solution. This project was implemented as a short term solution. Later, permanent steps will be taken by building an embankment."