“Floods cause damages but have some positive aspects too”
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today said severe floods cause damages but they also have some positive aspects.
Flood waters bring in silt that makes land more fertile and monsoon rains help recharge the underground water that is good in earthquake-prone countries, she said.
The premier was addressing a views-exchange meeting with public representatives, high officials of the government, political leaders and officials of the local administration at Sylhet Circuit House.
She held the meeting after inspecting – from a helicopter – the ravages wreaked by the early monsoon flood in Sylhet, Sunamganj and Netrakona districts.
Describing the current flood as "nothing new", she said, the people of Bangladesh have to live with such natural calamities.
The Prime Minister said her government will provide all necessary assistance, including food, medicines, water purifying tablets, oral saline and bleaching powder, to the flood-affected people in the north, urging them not to worry.
She said during the post-flood period, necessary assistance such as seeds and other inputs will also be given to farmers to help cultivate their lands and grow crops.
She also put emphasis on removing all wastes and garbage after flood water recedes.
At the same time, she urged the authorities concerned to take necessary preparations to face any possible crisis as flood waters rolling from the north are now likely to hit the middle and southern parts of the country.
PM Hasina firmly said that her government has taken all necessary steps to face the current flood situation in the entire Sylhet region as well as other parts of the country.
This is the third consecutive time that Sylhet region is experiencing floods, she said, adding that the government is doing its part accordingly to face the situation.
The PM thanks the officials of the administration, members of the armed forces and coast guards as well as leaders and workers of her party, Awami League, for standing beside the people while risking their lives.
She also advised rescue and relief workers to ensure their own safety too.
Referring to the big floods of 1998 and 1988, Hasina said it's a natural pattern that massive floods happen every ten or twelve years in Bangladesh.
She put emphasis on regular dredging of the rivers and the use of the silt for other purpose like making block bricks.
ELEVATED ROADS IN HAOR AREA
Talking about construction of roads in the haor areas, she mentioned that she has already given instructions that there will be no more regular roads in haor areas like Sylhet, Sunamganj, Netrakona and Kishoreganj.
"It will be elevated roads from now. These types of roads do not get damaged quickly and even in calamities like floods the communication remains smooth."
She said that elevated roads would help protect the region from waterlogging that leads to huge seasonal floods.
Later, the PM heard some local leaders who highlighted problems of the area and put several demands for development of the Sylhet region.