Padma disrupts road communications

Erodes banks at several bends 

Emran Hossain | Published: 00:29, Oct 06,2019 | Updated: 00:38, Oct 06,2019


Long tailback of vehicles creates at Paturia ferry point as ferry services disrupted on Paturia-Daulatdia route due to strong current on river Padma on Saturday. — New Age photo

The authorities diverted traffic on the Dhaka-Aricha Highway since Saturday as heavy currents in the Padma River hampered ferry services between Paturia and the Daulatdia ghats.

The Padma is flowing above its danger mark at several points for the sixth consecutive day  eroding its banks at different bends as India continued to discharge the flood flows through the Farakka Barrage.

According to government estimates the Padma devoured the homes of at least 6,256 families in Rajshahi and Shariatpur.

The families evacuated themselves on embankments under the open skies or at  relatives’ homes.

On September 29, India opened the floodgates of the Farakka Barrage.

Marooned villagers said that the government was downplaying the losses caused by erosion by the Padma, the Meghna and the Gorai.

Erosion is playing havoc also in Rajbari, Kushtia and Lakashimpur districts.

New Age correspondent in Manikganj reported that the district police diverted traffic from the Dhaka Aricha Highway.

The police took the move  after at least 500 vehicles remained stuck at the Paturia Ghat waiting to cross the mighty Padma.

The Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation said that three out of its six jetties have to be relocated as erosion had devoured these points at Daulatdia.

The BIWTC advised travellers to detour using the Jamuna Bridge.

The Paturia and the Daulatdia ghats are used by millions of people while travelling either way between the capital and 17 south-western districts and also for the transportation of goods by road. 

BIWTC assistant general manager Zillur Rahman told New Age that due to strong currents in the Padma 13 out of 16 ferries were unable to sail between the two key ghats across the Padma. 

He said that the erosion wreaked havoc  at the Daulatdia ghat for the last six days.

BIWTC’s Daulatdia station manager Abu Abdullah said that the remaining jetties also could get unusable anytime due to the Padma eroding its bank.

Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority deputy director Faridul Islam said that operations of small mechanised boats had been  suspended indefinitely.

Mmechanised boats carry hundreds of people across the Padma between  Paturia and the Daulatdia ghats every day.

The disaster management and relief ministry said that about 30,000 families had been  marooned by floods in Rajshahi, Kushtia, Rajbari and Shariatpur districts.

New Age correspondent at Islamic University reported that 50,000 people have been marooned by floods in Kushtia.

He said that the maroon people are in panic of snake bite.

The floods also damaged many schools, mosques and other establishments.

Standing winter vegetables have been damaged in six northern and central districts.

New Age correspondent in Bogura reported that vegetable fields in seven unions were badly damaged by floods caused by the overflowing Jamuna River.

The Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre said that the Padma began to recede Saturday morning and it might continue for the next 48 hours.

The Padma and the Gorai were flowing above the danger marks at Hardinge Bridge, Goalondo and the Kamarkhali River Gauging Stations.

This is for the second time since July that major floods hit Bangladesh.

In July over six million people in 28 districts were marooned by floods that occurred after  India opened the floodgates of its Gajaldoba Barrage.

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