Bhabadaha’s Waterlogging: Farmers defy the odd on their own

Waterlogging has always remained a perennial problem in Bhabadaha region since 1983, according to the Jashore Water Development Board sources.

Although much efforts have been given to remove waterlogging, a permanent solution to the problem is still a far cry.

Several lakh other people have been suffering due to tidal water that remains stagnant in Bhabadah area on the country’s south-western part for most of the year.

Perennial waterlogging occurred from 1990 to 1996.

But the farmers with their own initiative are trying to defy the odd with boro cultivation. Boro cultivation has started with the construction of embankment with their own funds.

Visiting the areas, it was seen that peasants of Payra, Chalishia, Sundali and Prembagh unions of Abhaynagar upazila under Bhabadaha region have started planting boro by draining out water with their own funds.

Abdul Quddus Tarafdar, president of Kota Chatra Beel Agriculture and Fisheries Project in Chalishia union, said out of 955 hectares of land, 500 hectares of land was embanked at a cost of about Tk 40 lakh.

Water pumps were used to flush out the water from the fields for about a month and the farmers started planting Boro in February, he said.

Boro cultivation could be completed in about 400 hectares of land. Farmers are dreaming of bumper crops now, he also said.

Prabir Kumar Roy, a farmer from Sundali Union, said, “We have completed Boro cultivation on 300 hectares of land through our own funds.”

“The people of the region are living an inhuman life as waterlogging occurs every year due to the short-sightedness of the Water Development Board,” he alleged.

A number of farmers Prembagh and Payra Union said that they were planting boro with a lot of effort.

No government assistance was found to remove water from the beel.

Upazila Agriculture Officer Golam Samdani said boro crops have been planted in 13,000 hectares of land out of 27,000 hectares in Abhaynagar upazila. The rest of the land is still under water.

Farmers of four unions of Bhabadaha area of the upazila have planted boro on their own initiative, he added.