Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) to organize long march to Tipaimukh dam in India  

Main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), headed by former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia, is set to come up with a programme of long march towards Tipaimukh dam of India in the coming winter to protest the Indian move to construct the dam over the common river Barak.

BNP will not go for any tough anti-government movement now considering the rainy season and the upcoming holy month of Ramzan, Lt Gen (retd) Mahbubur Rahman, a member of BNP standing committee, the highest policymaking body of the party, told newsmen here on Tuesday. After the July 7 countrywide human chain programme, the BNP may confine its programmes to public rallies and processions, he said. Mahbub thinks that considering the Tipamukh dam as a big national issue BNP will announce a long march towards it during the next winter season.  He, however, said the long march programme was being finalized by the party.  Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, during her trip to Delhi in January this year, urged her Indian counterpart Dr Manmohan Singh not to go ahead with the Tipaimukh dam construction as she said, it would sp[ell disaster for Bangladesh.

Bangladesh last year officially asked New Delhi to suspend construction of the Tipaimukh dam on the River Barak in the state of Assam in India, on the upstream of the River Meghna in Bangladesh.
“We have requested the government of India to suspend construction of the Tipaimukh dam until resolving the water sharing of the trans-boundary rivers,” foreign minister, Dr Dipu Mani, told the parliament. She said that the government had sought from India a report on the latest position of the construction of the dam.  The water resources ministry has also requested its counterpart in India to include the issue of Tipaimukh dam in the agenda of the 37th meeting of the Joint River Commission of the two countries, the foreign minister added.

The experts, including former Joint Rivers Commission member Dr Ainun Nishat, expressed concern over India’s start of construction of the multipurpose dam, which would leave adverse impact on the livelihood, ecology and economy in Bangladesh. 
(Courtesy: APP)