LGRD Minister Md Tajul Islam has said Dhaka dwellers can expect to face less waterlogging during the rainy season this year due to the re-excavation of the city’s canals.
He said Dhaka North, South and Chattogram City Corporations’ biggest problem is waterlogging. “We have taken initiative to hand over all the canals in Dhaka to the City Corporation to alleviate the waterlogging. We think we are now enjoying some of the benefits of handing over the canal,” he added.
Tejgaon, Shantinagar and many other areas of the city used to go under water during monsoon.
The minister was speaking at the 3rd Inter-Ministerial Meeting on prevention of dengue and other mosquito-borne diseases in Dhaka and Chattogram at the Secretariat on Sunday.
Asked how many canals have been recovered so far, the minister said, "We have handed over a total of 26 canals to the city corporations."
He said Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) has evicted illegal occupants over six and a half acres of land while Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) recovered 25 acres. “These works are in progress.”
Regarding the devastating flood in Sylhet, Tajul said, “We are always prepared for combating disasters.”
A committee has been formed from the LGRD ministry, convened by Joint Secretary Jasim Uddin, to deal with the floods. The committee will be in charge till next June 30. The duration will be extended if needed, he said.
Areas like Sylhet, Sunamganj, Jamalpur, Netrokona generally get inundated due to excessive rains as well as onrush of water from the upstream, Tajul added.
No organisation has given a forecast of how devastating the floods will be, except a warning, he said.
If the onrush of water from the upstream keeps flowing at this dangerous level due to the continuous rains, it may flood here in Dhaka too, he added.
“But we have to be prepared for any unfavorable situation and we are ready for all situations,” Tajul said.
Meanwhile, in response to a question on dengue menace, he said, "Both city mayors have made all our preparations to tackle dengue. They have adequate stocks of pesticides, medicines, and equipment they need.”