Strong political will needed to resolve water conflicts: Hasan

Environment and Forests Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud addresses a conference at Nabab Nawab Ali Chowdhury Senate Bhaban of Dhaka University in the capital on Friday.

Environment and Forests Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud on Friday underscored the need for forging a strong political will to resolve the ongoing trans-border water problems in the South Asia region.

“Conflict has been prevailing in the South Asian countries over the sharing of common river waters. If the political leaders feel that the people living in the downstream areas of the common rivers have

an equal right to water like the people living in the upstream, they’ll extend their cooperation in resolving the conflict,” he told the inaugural session of a conference here in the morning.

Bangladesh Poribesh Andolon (Bapa) and Bangladesh Environment Network (BEN) organised the international conference on ‘Water Resources in South Asia: Conflict to Cooperation (IC WRSACC)’ at Nabab Nawab Ali Chowdhury Senate Bhaban of Dhaka University.

Chaired by Bapa president ASM Shahjahan, the inaugural session was addressed, among others, by vice chancellor of Buet Prof Dr SM Nazrul Islam, Prof Gopal S Chinton of Tribhuvan University, Nepal, Kelly Alley of Auburn University, USA, BEN member Dr M Khalequzzaman, chairman of Conference Organising Committee Prof Nazul Islam, Bapa general secretary Dr Abdul Matin.

Speaking on the occasion as the chief guest, Hasan Mahmud said there has been no increase of singe drop of water since the creation of the planet, but the use of water is on the rise keeping pace with the

population growth and the increasing development works.

“The demand for water is increasing due to the fast growing population and thus conflicts break out in the South Asian countries, including India, Nepal and Bangladesh over water sharing of the common rivers. The ongoing water conflicts should be resolved through mutual cooperation,” he emphasised.

Source:The Daily Star