Engr. Md. Aminul Hoque, Khalishpur, Khulna
Recently there have been protests from different forums and groups about the dangers and consequences that the Tipaimukh dam will cause to Bangladesh. The prime minister of India laid the foundation stone of this dam on 24 November, 2004 and the Indian government is already going ahead with the controversial Tipaimukh dam project with a target to complete it by 2012. The dam will be over the cross-boundary river Borak, 100km upstream of eastern border of Sylhet district. It will be 1500 feet long and 500 feet high and will cost around Indian Rupees 9,000 crore. Once constructed, this dam would spell an ecological disaster for Bangladesh through desertification and flooding in our eastern region.
Bangladesh bas been suffering for decades from the Farakka Barrage, another death trap made by India. There were many protests, meetings, the historic long march, against Farakka, but all were in vain. Now, we are at the mercy of India about the share of the Ganges/Padma water that is crucial for our economy and environment. After completion of Tipaimukh dam we will be rendered further helpless. History proves that we always failed in realizing our legitimate shares of water of the common rivers from India which is not going by international law and all along showed no interest in Bangladesh's proposal to solve the problem.
The announcement of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to form an all-party parliamentary committee to visit the Tipaimukh dam site to gather information and technical details of the project to enable the Bangladesh government to determine its policy is a welcome step. But if we have learnt anything from our past experience then there is no scope of solving this issue without involving the UN or at least Nepal which may cooperate with Bangladesh for a reasonable solution to this water-sharing conflict