Riverbank Erosion Displacees in Bangladesh: Need for Institutional Response and Policy Intervention

9110 Words Feb 20th, 2014 37 Pages
Bangladesh Journal of Bioethics, 2011;2(2): 4-19


MD Fakrul Islam, Ph.D, and A.N.M. Bazlur Rashid, Ph.D. 1. Professor, Department of Social works, University of Rajshahi, Bangladesh 2. University of Rajshahi, Bangladesh

ABSTRACT: Environmental refugees are one of the most burning issues at this time throughout the world. Bangladesh, a riverine country, is suffering from acquit riverbank erosion which compels millions of her population to be displaced from their place of origin. As such, 283 locations, 85 towns and growth centers, along with 2400 kilometers of riverbank line in Bangladesh are vulnerable to erosion. The major rivers
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have been revealed in this paper. There are no specific policies to rehabilitate the erosion-hit people. Thus, it is time to formulate policies to address prevention of riverbank erosion as well as to rehabilitate the river-erosion refugees.

1.1 INTRODUCTION Bangladesh is a land of rivers. More than 700 rivers, with their tributaries and distributaries have criss-crossed the country forming a network of river system. It has about 2,400 kilometers of bank line and along with the bankline there are 283 locations, 85 towns and growth centers are vulnerable to erosion1. The Padma (The Ganges), the Jamuna and the Meghna, major rivers of Bangladesh, erode several thousand hectares of floodplain, making thousands of people landless and homeless every year. In recent years, throughout the world, victims of environmental disasters are growing in number than the victims of war or other (man-made) forceful migration. Victims of such political violence receive satisfactory media coverage along with different types of assistance from various national and international agencies. But the uprooted migrants- caused by environmental disasters- fail to attract such level of local or international attention which tends them to be more vulnerable. According to the United Nations University (UNU), victims of

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