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Thread: Long March starts for Khulna from Jessore

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    Elite Member Naveed HRitom's Avatar
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    Long March starts for Khulna from Jessore

    The national committee long march on Friday started for Khulna at 9:30 am from Jessore.

    National Committee to Protect Oil, Gas, Mineral Resources, Power and
    Ports on Wednesday embarked on the five day Dhaka-Sundarban long march to
    press their seven point demand, including scraping of the coal based Rampal
    Thermal Power Plant.

    The marchers held their first roadside rally at Noapara in Jessore, Phultala
    bus stand at 12.30 noon.

    Sheikh Muhammad Shaheedullah, the convener of the committee, and member
    secretary Anu Muhamad and others spoke at the rally.

    The marchers will hold a rally at Hadis Park in Khulna in the afternoon.

    The marchers will start for Digraj of Rampal on Saturday.

    The Sundarban declaration will be announced from the concluding rally at Digraj.

    More than 1500 marchers are taking part in the march.
    Fear Is No Policy Surrender Is No Option

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    Elite Member Naveed HRitom's Avatar
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    Re: Long March starts for Khulna from Jessore

    Long march asks govt to drop Rampal project




    Several thousand left-leaning activists who joined the Dhaka-Sundarbans long march on Thursday demanded the government should not to go ahead to set up the planned 1,320MW coal-fired power plant at Rampal in Bagerhat near the Sundarbans.
    Hundreds of people joined the Dhaka-Sundarbans long march raising their voice for cancellation of the Rampal project which reached Jessore town on the evening for an overnight stay on the third day.
    The National Committee to Protect Oil, Gas, Mineral Resources, Power and Ports organising the five-day march toward Sundarbans, a World Heritage Site and the world’s largest mangrove forest, to press for their seven-point demand, including scrapping of the Rampal power plant project.


    Power division secretary Monwar Islam said on Wednesday that the government is going ahead to lay the foundation of the power plant at Rampal.
    Leaders and activists, while speaking at different rallies at Jessore town hall, at Madhukhali bus stand, Magura Suhrawardy College field and Jhenaidah Arabpur Bus stand heavily criticized the government for fixing the date of laying foundation of the Rampal project.
    They also castigated prime minister’s energy adviser Tawfiq-E-Elahi Chowdhury for his claim that the plant would not be harmful for Sundarbans terming it ‘baseless’.


    National committee convener Sheikh Mohammad Shaheedullah alleged that local Awami League was trying to obstruct the national committee rally at Digraj in Bagherhat by calling a meeting at the same place.
    He said that they would continue their programmes braving any obstacles from any quarter. He also called
    on the people to be united to resist any conspiracy to foil the march.


    During the long march, members of at least 10 cultural organisations through songs and street drama and other presentations are trying to make people aware that all should come forward to save the Sundarbans as it always protected Bangladesh against natural calamities.


    Cultural activists in pick up van travelling with long march caravan are rendering patriotic songs and performing street dramas and songs before and after the rallies.
    Cultural organisations like Udichi Shilpi Gosthi, Samagit, Gayen, Charan, Ai Bangla, Oikik, Bibartan and Sangskritik Union are taking part at the programmes.
    The campaigners highlighted that the Sundarbans was home for a wide range of plants and animals, including the Royal Bengal Tiger and its mangrove forests played a vital role in protecting the country from storms, tidal surges and rising sea levels.
    When the long march convoy of buses, pick-up vans, microbuses and other vehicles pass by roadside markets and commercial complexes, hundreds of people greet the marchers standing on the wayside.
    Activists of left-leaning political parties, including many women, under the banner of the national committee are participating in the 400-kilometre long march.
    The marchers will reach Khulna on September 27. Finally, the committee will hold a rally at Digraj where it will announce the Sundarbans Declaration.


    Bangladesh-India Friendship Power Company, a joint venture between the Bangladesh Power Development Board and Indian National Thermal Power Corporation with 50:50 shares, is implementing the $2 billion power project at Rampal in Bagerhat district near the Sundarbans.
    On July 10 this year, the Department of Environment gave approval to the PDB submitted Environment Impact Assessment Report. On April 20, the power board signed a power purchase agreement with the BIFPC to buy electricity from the proposed plant for 25 years.
    The government has already acquired land from private owners in Rampal on the bank of the river Pashur to set up the plant. More than 95 per cent of the allocated land is harvestable three times a year and produces 1,285 tonnes of rice and 561.41 tonnes of fish every year. Over 8,000 families are permanent residents of the allocated land and among them 7,500 families live on agriculture and fisheries.


    The power plant at Rampal in Bagerhat is only 14 kilometres from the Sundarbans, while the Wild Life Protection Act 1972 of India prohibits installation of a power generation plant within 15-kilometre radius of wildlife reserves, national parks and forests.
    Indian environment ministry rejected a NTPC proposal for installation of a 1,320-megawatt thermal power plant in Chhattisgarh on the ground that the proposed plant was ‘highly threatening to the environment’
    Fear Is No Policy Surrender Is No Option

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    Elite Member Naveed HRitom's Avatar
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    Re: Long March starts for Khulna from Jessore

    5 more coal-fired power plants endorsed

    The government has approved installation of five more coal-fired power plants amid widespread criticism over the Rampal Thermal Plant near the Sunderbans.



    Each unit from these plants, with production capacity between 1,500MW and 2,500 MW, will cost between Tk 6 and 7.

    The Cabinet Committee on Government Purchase approved the proposal on Sunday.

    Of the five proposed plants to be constructed on Build-Own-Operate (BOO) basis, the Orion Group will construct three and S Alam Group two.

    Finance Minister AMA Muhith said the contractors would bear costs for construction, coal import and power production.

    The government will buy power from these plants at Tk 6 to 7 per unit.

    Backing the decision, he said, “We must produce power using coals as it is the cheapest (raw material). We are trying to utilise it.”

    Sunday’s meeting approved tenders to appoint sponsors for setting up these plants.

    Coal is being increasingly used for power generation in many countries. The Power Secretary had said nearly 41 percent of power produced in the world came from coal while Bangladesh used it to generate less than one percent of its total power.

    The government struck a deal with India to set up the 1,320MW plant at Rampal, 14 kilometres from the Sunderbans.

    The foundation stone of the plant will be laid on Oct 22, which the National Committee for Protecting Oil-Gas-Mineral Resources and Power, Ports has vowed to thwart. The BNP has also thrown its weight behind the protestors.

    Orion Group will construct two of its plants in Dhaka and another in Chittagong. The two plants of S Alam Group will be constructed in Chittagong and Barisal.

    “We approved the plants on BOO basis. The companies will construct the plants and manage coal,” Muhith said of the plants.

    Meanwhile, the Cabinet Committee also nodded a proposal to appoint a Russian contractor firm to complete the first phase of the Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant Project.

    The contractor will complete the work with $265 million.

    Muhith said the government went for the project with Russian funding and technical assistance considering all risks.
    Fear Is No Policy Surrender Is No Option

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