Published:  12:35 AM, 07 February 2019

HC order to curb air pollution

Last week, the High Court directed authorities concerned to make drives through conducting mobile court raids to take legal actions against the persons responsible for air pollution in the capital. While this order is significant, it is also of concern whether the order will be properly followed by the authorities.

If they would truly realise their responsibilities to take care of the capital gagged by numerous problems including air pollution, the city would not have been in dire straits. This is a pity for the poor dwellers of Dhaka. In fact, this is nothing new that the current degree of contaminating materials in the air of Dhaka is very high. Every year, from November to February which constitute the winter season in the country, air pollution rises up to a seriously harmful phase.

However, every year, a number of news reports, regarding Dhaka's air pollution, are published in the media that Dhaka's air pollution has reached the damaging level. And then, the Department of Environment organizes meetings, the officials of various government agencies gather there and discuss the issue with utmost enthusiasm. After that they go home and forget everything resulting in no progress in their actions which they have promised for.

This tedious fashion is recurring year after year. Experts have claimed that the condition of air pollution in Dhaka resembles that of Delhi. There are active efforts in Delhi or Beijing to reduce air pollution though. In between these two cities, Beijing's efforts have, however, proved effective; they have already brought down the city's air pollution to a considerable level.

And for this, they, on one hand, have shut down many factories causing pollution and, on the other, also shifted many industries to other remote places. The expired engine-driven motor vehicles have been kept off the roads. Notably, they have introduced gas- and electricity-run vehicles instead of diesel-run ones and have been successful in encouraging people to use electricity-driven vehicles more.

We also know the causes of air pollution in Dhaka. There are many unbridled brick fields around the metropolis, and the high number of diesel-run and expired vehicles in the streets. There is no visible step in preventing indiscriminate digging of roads and the dusts produced during construction works.

Even, there are various types of factories in the city. So, it is not a matter of determining what steps should be taken to reduce air pollution in Dhaka. The coordinated efforts of all organizations concerned, including Environment Department, Bangladesh Road Transport Authority, Dhaka Metropolitan Police, Rajdhani Unyaon Kotripakkha, two City Corporations and Dhaka WASA, are enough to curb the danger. Now what we need is just move to work, rather than high talks.

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