Bangladesh Poribesh Andolon (BAPA), Buriganga Riverkeeper and Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA) jointly organized a citizens’ gathering in cooperation with Bangladesh Bank to observe the ‘Earth Day 2016’. The event was held by the bank of Buriganga near Basila (old) Government Primary School on April 21, 2016 at 10:30 am.‘Life & River’- a tale of the community people, was the title of the event, where the people of multiple walks of life who are living by the Buriganga riverbank and adjacent areas participated to the event. A good number of people from different livelihoodsshared their experiences, expectations and demands related to the River Buriganga. Sultana Kamal, the Chairperson of BPI and Vice President, BAPA; Rasheda K. Choudhury, the Vice President, BAPA; Sayeda Rizwana Hasan, the Chief Executive, BELA; Khondokar Morshed Millat, the Deputy General Manager, Bangladesh Bank; Sharif Jamil, Buriganga Riverkeeper and the Joint Secretary, BAPA and Abdul Karim Kim, Surma River Waterkeeper spoke on the occasion.
Sultana kamal said, “Bangladesh is a riverine country, but we are losing our rivers very repidly. River pollution andencroachment are incerasing at an alarming rate. Government is indulging river encroachment. The illegal occupants should be brought under legal action”. She discussed about the contributions of the environmental activists and said to the government, “If you can’t support environmental activists, no problem. But do not act like fool to try to stop environmental movement. She also added that, the movement for protecting the Sundarbans was logical and environmentalists were fighting for the sake of the earth.
Sharif Jamil said, “the initiative of the government to relocate the tannery industry to Savar, should be implemented immediately and properly. We have to ensure a comprehensive surveillance so that this industry cannot pollute water and environment of Savar. Government should have a comprehensive action plan about relocation of tannery industries”.
The program was followed by a cultural show where Asir Uddin Boyati and his group performed Baul songs on life and river.