Shillong: Apart from reviving the ancient mode of transportation, the importance of ‘joint river management’ by neighbouring countries was highlighted at the first-ever Nadi 2016 Festival that concluded here on Saturday.
Organized by the Asian Confluence, the two-day Nadi 2016 Festival with the theme – ‘Listen to the River’- kicked off on Friday and was inaugurated by the Meghalaya chief minister, Mukul Sangma. It aimed at initiating an exhaustive political dialogue on fostering riverine connectivity, trade links and sharing of ideas on environmental issues.
Sangma said the NE being land locked had no access to seaports and expressed hope that this kind of platform would facilitate bringing about solutions to such problems.
Representatives from neighbouring countries – Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal – have called for a joint river management as they maintained that ‘the rivers are important for future development’.
Syed Muazzem Ali, high commissioner of Bangladesh in India, said, “Rivers require sustainable joint management. The sooner we understanding this, the better.”
Referring to the violence and unpleasant situation all over the world, he said, “Before it’s too late, let us try and save our rivers.” Ali said industrialization and building of hydroelectric power plants are good but this had to be done in a systematic manner.
Echoing similar views, former ambassador of Bhutan to India Dago Tshering said sources of safe drinking water were shrinking and more and more rivers were being polluted by toxic chemicals.
High commissioner of India to Bangladesh, Harsh Vardhan Shringla, said the forum of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal (BBIN) had decided to form a joint committee and was examining many issues.
Source : TOI