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  • Project Assessment Mission: BDP Team visits Chalan Beel

    Project Assessment Mission: BDP Team visits Chalan Beel

    In the last week of March 2015, a BDP team led by Giasuddin Ahmed Choudhury, Deputy Team Leader of BDP 2100, visited the Chalan Beel area in the lower section of North West Bangladesh in the Rajshahi Division to assess project feasibility. One of the outputs of the Bangladesh Delta Plan 2100 is an Implementation Plan which includes plans about specific projects which the government can undertake in the future beyond 2016 when the Delta Plan document is final and implementation has begun. The Project Assessment Missions are being organized in order to understand which locations are best fit for development projects from a water resource management and delta governance perspective. The Chalan Beel visit marks the beginning of a series of hotspot visits in different locations which will be carried out over the next six months in order to assess the best locations for projects under the Bangladesh Delta Plan 2100.

    Before speaking to people of Chalan Beel, the team met Shajidur Rahman Sarder, Superintending Engineer of the Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB) Rajshahi, to discuss relevant water-related, environmental and socioeconomic issues. At the site, the team interacted with different groups of local people and the Chalan Beel Rakkha Andolon Committee, including the committee’s Joint Secretary S.M. Mizanur Rahman to understand the pulse of the people and understand the various factors that need to be understood. The committee members shared their concerns about water resource management of the Chalan Beel, and protection of biodiversity as well as the livelihoods of people whose lives are linked to the wetland. BDP Consultants Md. Atiqur Rahman, Investment Planning Consultant and Md. Minhazur Rahman, Sociologist, accompanied the Deputy Team Leader on the assignment.

    About Chalan Beel (from Wikipedia):

    Chalan Beel is a wetland in Bangladesh. It is a large inland depression, marshy in character, with rich flora and fauna. Forty-seven rivers and other waterways flow into the Chalan Beel. As silt builds up in the beel, its size is being reduced. Chalan Beel is an extensive lowland area in the lower Atrai basin, and spreads across Singra and Gurudaspur upazilas on Natore District, Chatmohar, Bhangura and Faridpur upazilas of Pabna District, and Ullahpara, Raiganj and Tarash upazilas of Sirajganj District. It consists of a series of beels connected to one another by various channels to form a continuous water body during the rainy season. Although the beel area expands into a vast water body with dense aquatic vegetation as long as the Jamuna remains flooded during the monsoon months, it dries out in the winter months, leaving only patches of water in the central parts of this zone.

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