A mobile court on Monday evicted five brickfields and fined the owners Tk 20 lakh at Baluchor union of Sirajdikhan upazila on charges of polluting the nenvironment.
Kazi Tanjid Ahmed, Executive Magistrate of the Department of Environment, conducted the drive.
The brickfields accused of polluting the environment are – Mama Bhagina Bricks, Molla Bricks, Akash Bricks, KBC Bricks and Mayer Doa Bricks.
The mobile court fined Molla Bricks Tk 8 lakh, Akash Bricks Tk 5 lakh, KBC Bricks Tk 2 lakh and Mayer Doa Bricks Tk 5 lakh. However, Mama Bhagina Bricks were not fined.
Kazi Tanjid Ahmed, Executive Magistrate, informed that these brick kilns are manufacturing bricks through conventional method causing severe environment pollution. Besides, he said, they are manufacturing bricks without any valid papers.
“The brick field named ‘Mama Bhagina’ was dismantled using veku machine. The other brick kilns were demolished through spraying water and by dismantling all the raw materials,” he added.
He also informed that as per the information of Department of Environment, there are a total of 78 brick kilns in the district. Of them, 69 brickfields are in Sirajdikhan upazila, 5 in Gozaria and 2 each in Sreenagar and Louhajang upazilas.
Only thirty-two of the brickfields of Munshiganj district are legal while the others have no clearance certificate.
The Environment Directorate said that drive will be conducted in other brickfields in phases.
Abdul Mannan, General Secretary of Sirajdikhan Brick Manufacturing Owners Association said that “there are 55 brickfields under our association. Out of these, the administration has announced 37 as illegal. However according to our survey, the number of illegal brick fields are 5 to 7.”
He also said that zigzag chimney was used in 95 percent brickfields of the upazila which refines the harmful black smoke. However papers of some zigzag brickfields were not completed and so those were declared illegal, he added.
Abdul Mannan, Sirajdikhan Brick Manufacturing Owners Association,also said that “if the brickfields are suddenly closed down, then thousands of workers and owners would be forced on to the street. We demand that we should be given opportunity to operate at least with zigzag chimney. If after that we fail to make the brickfields legal then we will close down those. We would have to commit suicide if the government doesn’t consider our sufferings.”