29th April 2016. Today right groups has organized a human chain and a rally in front of national press club and different student and photography organizations has organized a photography exhibition in Teachers and Student Centre (TSC) Dhaka University DU), to remember the devastating cyclone of 29th April 1991 Marian, which was category 5 caused around 0.5 million deaths in coastal regions of Bangladesh and they have also demanded that government must not wait for foreign fund and urged to take immediate step to construct embankment to protect coastal people and land which should be the fundamental to climate adaptation. They have criticized the government as they said government is over emphasizing infrastructure to export led economic growth rather than giving importance to critical infrastructure to protect coastal people and land, they have also demanded reform in Water Development Board which is the responsible government agency to construct coastal embankment.
Rally in front of national press club was organized by 16 coastal organizations, namely Uddipan, Uddayan Bangladesh, MMC, SDS, Coast Trust, Grameen Jono Unnayan Sangsta, Dak Diye Jai, Docap, Dwip Unnayan Sangster, Nolicity Model Soceity, PHALS, Pirojpur Gono Unnayan Somitee, PRAN, Prantojon, Sangkalpa Trust, Humanity Watch, the rally was moderated by Mostafa Kamal Akhanda of Coast Trust, speakers of the rally was Shawkat Ali Tutul, Zayed Iqbal Khan , Aminu Rasul Babul and Rezaul Karim Chowdhury. Photography exhibition of prominent photographer Din M Shibly has been organized in TSC, DU was organized by Leaves and Branches, Dhaka University Photography Society, Dhaka University Environment Society, Dhaka University Cultural Society, Dhaka University Tourist Society, Environment Move, Coast Trust and EquityBD. The photography exhibition title “A Tale from Climate Ground Zero” was inaugurated by Pro Vice Chancellor Dr Shahid Akhter Hossain; other speakers of exhibition are Din M Shibly and Rezaul Karim Chowdhury from COAST Trust.
Rezaul Karim Chowdhury from COAST Trust mentioned, government is blind to export led growth so the coastal areas still unsafe and people have to migrate in town where they became slum dwellers and working as house maid, day labor, garments worker or rickshaw pullers, i.e. engaging them in low paid job, moreover government hardly looking in the loss of lands making the country’s food security unstable, this is a sort of exploitation by elites and ruling classes of Bangladesh to the coastal population. He said that country has capacity to do sustainable embankment in coastal area with own resources, but there are hardly any political will. He also blame international NGO, donor darling consultants and donors that they are making coastal vulnerability simply for aid marketing. Shawkat Ali Tutul propose 8 proposals to reform Water Development Board including making it accountable to upazila and zila parishad and integrating transparency and participation of the agency to the local people and local government. Dr Shahid Pro VC of Dhaka University said that, we must have to investee resources from our own to protect the coastal people and land first.