Kansat tragedy back to memory as Irri-Boro season begins

No improvement in power supply for irrigation

The Daily Star, January 4, 2008

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Photo: The Daily Star

Kansat tragedy is back to memory of farmers as Boro irrigations season begins.

On this day (January 3) in 2006, two people were killed and several others injured in police firing during the then BNP-led four-party alliance regime when people were agitating for electricity at Kansat in Shibganj upazila for uninterrupted supply of electricity for irrigation.

Although three years have passed after the tragic incident but people’s demand for smooth supply of power did not fulfill. In this backdrop, the day reappears when boro cultivation season is nearing.

Golam Rabbani, leader of Palli Bidyut Unnayan Sangram Committee said, “We shall put up our demand to the new government”. “We shall go on further agitation if the government does not take steps to fulfill our demand,” he said.

A meeting will be held under the auspices of Palli Bidyut Unnayan Sangram Committee at Kansat Rajbari ground on January 14 afternoon.

Thousands of villagers laid siege to the office of Palli Bidyut Samity (PBS), rural electrification board, at Kansat in Shibganj upazila demanding fulfillment of their demand.

Protests continued for over four months in 10 unions of the upazila. The situation went out of control of administration as no steps were taken for fulfillment of people’s demands. Because of continued protests and barricades put up by angry people, Sonamasjid, the second largest land port in the country remained inoperative for a long time depriving country of hard-earned revenue.

Atrocities continued from January to April as police charged baton, threw teargas shells and fired bullets on innocent villagers. A large number of people were arrested and many others compelled to leave their houses to evade arrest and persecution.

Local people held former BNP lawmaker Shahjahan Mia for instructing police to open fire on innocent people. Not only people of Chapainawabganj, but also of entire country were shocked at the tragic incident.

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