The 0.720-km-long flood protection groyne built along the Gorai river is under threat of being damaged when the rainy season comes as sand is being illegally lifted from the river bed.
On a recent visit to the spot, this correspondent saw a group of people loading sand on to locally assembled vehicles like Bata Humber to carry the sand over a portion of the groyne, which has separated the concrete blocks from each other.
Many holes were also found in different places of the groyne.
Located at Mahanagar Tak under Hatosh Haripur union in Sadar upazila, the groyne was built on priority basis under Gorai River Re-Excavation Project for Gorai River Restoration to save six villages of the union from erosion by the river.
Tk 50 crore was spent to build the groyne and construction ended in June in 2017. Water Development Board (WDB) in the district is responsible for maintaining the groyne.
According to experts, the concrete blocks will develop cracks inside and move apart from each other if heavy pressure is put on the groyne.
“The concrete blocks will get damaged if sand-laden vehicles move on it,” said district WDB Executive Engineer Arifuzzaman. He added that he will look into the matter immediately.
Hatosh Haripur Union Parishad Chairman Shampa Mahmud said the groyne was built after a long struggle by the people living on the river bank. “I will inform the local administration about the matter,” she said.
Sadar Upazila Assistant Commissioner (land) Sakib Al Rabbi said lifting sand is totally illegal. “We must take action against those involved in it,” he added.