June 24, 2024, 12:57 pm

Meghna Brick Kiln in Tarash: Random burning of firewood posing threat to health, environment

  • Update Time : Saturday, May 25, 2024
  • 110 Time View
Photo: Collected

Sabbir Mirza, Tarash

Despite the government rules, an unauthorized brick kiln in Tarash upazila of Sirajganj district burns about 300 maunds of firewood daily instead of coal that posing serious threat to the public health and local environment.

The festival of rule violation is going on at broad daylight on the top of nose of the authorities concerned, but none of them is paying heeds in this regard for the greater interest of locality.

There is an allegation that, the influential brick kiln owner is running the illegal trade after managing some officials in exchange of money (bribe).

It is learnt from a spot visit that, Meghna Brick Kiln, owned by former UP Chairman Saidur Rahman, has been established on the arable land at Madhainagor Kalibari area in Tarash upazila few years ago. Since then, it has been burning bricks with firewood flouting the government regulations. Not only that the kiln doesn’t have any license of the authorities concerned and even certificate of the environment department, though the license and environmental certificate are mandatory to carry a brick kiln.

Locals said that, ignoring the bar of local residents, the brick kiln owner has set up the kiln on the cultivated land that destroying local environment and threatening eco-diversity.

Though, the government imposed a directive to use Zigzag chimney at every brick kiln instead of tin chimney, the brick kiln is running with tin chimney showing thumb to the government’s rule.

During the visit, this correspondent found that, top soil collected from several arable lands was used in the kiln to produce bricks. As a result, the lands are losing their fertility as well as the entire area is turning into the desert.

Due to indiscriminately use of firewood in the brick kiln, the crops of neighboring fields are being damaged, while trees of the area are getting perished for emitting of toxic fume from the kiln.

Seeking anonymity, a labourer of the brick kiln told The Daily Sky that, on average 1 lakh bricks are burned in the kiln each year. To burn this large scale of bricks, there is needed huge quantity of firewood, which is collected from neighboring areas. Consequently, trees are felling everyday exhausting local forest.

Local residents complained that, they are being affected with several diseases including asthma, cough, skin infection and allergy due to black smoke of brick kiln. But, there is no outcome even after giving several verbal complaints to the local public representatives including Chairman.

Abdullah Al-Mamun, Upazila Agriculture Officer (UAO) in Tarash told The Daily Sky that, “The production of the crop-lands located nearby brick kiln reduces day by day due to non-compliance with the directive of using Zigzaq system. Paddy turns into rusty or grainless. If necessary action is not taken immediately, the production of those lands is likely to come zero level within next five years.”

While this correspondent tried to contact with the UNO in Tarash upazila and brick kiln owner Saidur Rahman over cell phone for their comments in this regard, they did not respond the call.

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