If I want to start from the very beginning of the story of Padma bridge, I think, I may write a story book on that. Fortunately, that book will be sold like a hot cake; but unfortunately, that book will be nothing but a crap. That is the summary of the Padma bridge’s history in the past. There were so many drama within Bangladesh and internationally, specially with World Bank. Our Government was caught red handed for all their corruption during processing this project. However, as the government promised to the general public during election, they must do something about this project; otherwise they know very well that they will be rejected by public in next national election.
This project has become a challenge for the government, as a result, they started the project without any proper preparation or planning and as a result, it is going to be total mess of the project; specially financially. So far about 18% works is completed as per the statement of the related authority. Funny thing is, expenditure is already increased by 8 thousand 300 crore BDT already due to the delay of the process. Even our so called honorable finance minister does not know, from where he will arrange this money. Total amount of the expense now is 28 thousand 793 crore BDT. Our government has started the project saying that this project will be completed from our own budget over five years. So, where is that sourcing of finance now? Why they are waiting for foreign investment for this project?
There are so many parts of this project; from skilled manpower to the equipment and execution as per the time line. Does anyone believe it possible to finish this project within deadline? I don’t think so. Because, already corruptions has boarded on the shoulder of the project. Local political leaders has pocketed so much money already from the reserve fund for this project that authority has nothing but waiting for investment from foreign source.
Think about the people who used to live in the areas where this project is taking place. Their lands are acquired by the government. But are they given proper compensation for that yet? Are they rehabilitated with alternative housing or income source for their smooth livelihood? So, where will those people will go? What will happen to their lives? None is bothered about that. Simply, government is aimed to complete the project fully or partially to tell the public before next general election that ‘Look what we have done’. They actually don’t bother about the sufferer.
So many critical factors are still unsolved, only creator knows. All the equipment have to reach in time, planned pilings have to be completed as per the design, all the critical decision has to be taken well before in time to achieve the dead line. There is not a single example of such completion in Bangladesh history. So we are going to face another bluff from the government during next few years. So everyone fasten your seat belt to go for this fake dreamy ride.
And my suggestion to the government, Stop lying, tell the truth to the public; hopefully they may consider the issues/ problems and might forgive you. To the opposition, stop negotiating with the government for your own benefit and for the public, Raise your voice.