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PM asks BNP to provide proof of Haor radiation claims




Desk Live: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has asked the BNP to prove their claim that fishes and aquatic animals in the flooded backswamps of Sunamganj have died of radioactive emissions.

The premier, also the ruling Awami League President said this while speaking at a meeting of the Awami Leaguea��s local government election nomination board at Ganabhaban on Monday.

She said that the BNPa��s claims were just fabricated propagandas.

a�?I would like to ask them (BNP) to present evidence of what they have said. People will not believe them without proof,a�? the PM said.

She asked them to prove such scientific matters by giving evidence of scientific tests in labs.

The issue has arisen in light of crops in haors of Sunamganj, Kishoreganj, Netrokona, Moulvibazar, Sylhet and Habiganj districts going under water in flash floods in early April.
Fishes and ducks, including other aquatic animals have also begun to die after the water got contaminated by water flowing in from India.

Media reports had cited concerns from experts and local residents that had feared that the fishes and birds might have died due to radiation from open pit uranium mines in the Indian state of Meghalaya across the border in Sunamganj.

Late last year, the Khasi community living just across the border near Sunamganja��s Tanguar haor raised concerns over the death of the fish population which it suspected was caused by uranium toxin exposure owing to the open pit mining of uranium.

A team of the Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission visited Sunamganj on Sunday and concluded that the level of radiation in the haors was not alarming.

The officers had said they had found no evidence of uranium contamination.

However, BNP leader Ruhul Kabir Rizvi on Monday questioned the BAEC reports.

The BNP leader said media reports and social media posts to back the claim that uranium mining in India was responsible for the contamination.

a�?The people do not believe in any inquiry by this government,a�? he said.

Later at the Ganabhaban meeting, the PM said the government had not wasted any time in investigating the claim of uranium contamination when reports about it surfaced.

a�?We are investigating why the fishes and animals are dying,a�? she added.

Dhaka, 25 April, ( //AM

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