19 September 2022, Mon

It may turn the entire Sylhet region into desert; may cause repeated flood as well

PM signs MoU with India on sharing the water of Kushiara river; Jamaat Ameer condemns

Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami's Ameer Dr. Shafiqur Rahman has issued the following statement on 19th September 2022 protesting and condemning the unequal treaty regarding the water sharing of Kushiara river as the Prime Minister signed in her recent trip to India.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has signed 7 memorandums of understanding in her recent trip to India. One of these memorandums is Kushiara river's water sharing treaty. According to the treaty, Bangladesh can collect 143 cusec water as per the approval of neighbouring India. But practically, during dry seasom, from November to February, on an average, 5295 cusec to 17650 cusec of water is flowing through the Bangladesh part of the Kushiara river. In comparison to that quantity, 153 cusec is very low. It is just one-third of the current flow. The experts and civil society members think that, there is no valid logic behind signing a treaty with the Kushiara rivers's water only. Because of this MoU, India can interfere now to bar Bangladesh from collecting water farm this river. The government of Bangladesh is claiming that, irrigation of 10 thousand hectares of land is possible with this 153 cusec water. But the experts opined that, maximum 3700 hectares of land can be irrigated with this water.

For many years, Bangladesh has been facing problems with India in regards to the sharing of common river's water and border killings. India has seized the water flow in dry season to turn Bangladeshi lands into desert. While, during rainy seasons they opened all dams to cause severe flood in Bangladesh. This year, Sylhet, Sunamganj, Habiganj and Moulvibazar districts have gone through the horrible experiences of flood.

Earlier, India has constructed Farakka dam which had turned the northern region of the country into a desert. Long awaited Teesta river treaty issue is not resolved yet. Under such circumstances, the government has signed MoU about the Kushiara river which may transform greater Sylhet region into desert. The people of these areas, have been struggling for many years to secure their water rights. But instead of showing minimum respect to that struggle, the government has served the interest of india and signed a unequal treaty with the neighbouring country. We are vehemently condemning this accord. We are of the view that Bangladesh should immediately sign the UN Convention on the Law of Non-Navigational uses of International Water Resources and act accordingly.