The Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) yesterday knocked down 252 illegal structures, including 10 multi-storey buildings, at the capital's Kamrangirchar.
The move was a part of the ongoing drives to demolish unauthorised establishments along the Buriganga river.
A mobile court led by BIWTA Joint Director AKM Arif Uddin started the fifth day's drive stretching from Thotar More to Loharpool in Kamrangirchar around 10:30am and continued until 4:00pm.
With the latest demolition, 908 structures have so far been knocked down in the drives, which will continue for eight more workdays.
On the fifth day yesterday, BIWTA demolished two five-storey buildings, three four-storey buildings, two three-storey buildings, nine one-storey buildings, 25 semi-concrete structures and 208 tin-shed structures.
Earlier, BIWTA identified 906 illegal structures along the bank of the river stretching from Sadarghat to Gabtoli. They started a 13-day drive on January 29 to remove all the illegal structures to free the river from encroachers.
Arif said influential people were behind the encroachment of the rivers.
“We will not bow down to anybody and demolish every illegal structure as we are getting necessary support of the administration, judiciary and people,” he observed.
He said they would continue their drives for eight more days to free the rivers surrounding the capital.
Under a new project, the government would set up some 12,000 demarcation pillars along the rivers around the capital to protect them from encroachment.
Tender would be floated by this month and the work might start within next three months. The government has already appointed a consultant to implement the Tk 850 crore project.
Under the project, the government would build some 50km-long walkways, plant trees along the walkways and set up three eco-parks at Shinnirtek, Tongi and Ashulia.
The authorities would also build 19 jetties at Amin Bazar, Gabtoli, Kanchpur, Tanbazar, Machuwa Bazar, Khanpur and some other areas.