Magurchhara tragedy: Human chain blocking road

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Mashahid Ahmed, Moulvibazar: A human chain was held at noon on the initiative of environmental organization Pahar Raksha and Unnayan Society at Chaumuhana Chattar of Kamalganj Upazila demanding protection of national resources and recovery of damages in Magurchhara gas disaster. After the human chain, a memorandum was handed over to the Prime Minister through the Upazila Nirbahi Officer demanding 5 points. Sujan Kamalganj Upazila Branch Secretary Lecturer Rabeya Khatun, Lecturer Selim Ahmed Chowdhury, Kamalkundi Secretary Pintu Debnath and others expressed solidarity in the human chain held under the chairmanship of Monayem Khan, President of Hill Protection and Development Society and conducted by journalist Nirmal S. Palash. At that time, the speakers said that due to the whims of US company Occidental, gas exploded in Magurchhara gas well at midnight on14 June  1997. Gas, tea gardens, forests, railways, roads and surrounding houses were burnt in the fire. Severe damage is to the environment. But it has not been possible to recover the compensation yet. The human chain called on the government to immediately file a case in the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and seek compensation. The speakers also said that even on the 25th anniversary of the explosion at the Magurchhara gas well in Kamalganj, the US multinational oil and gas company Occidental, Unicol or Chevron has not yet paid any compensation for the nature of the forest environment. To date, no solution has been found to compensate for the loss of forest environment, biodiversity, railways and roads.

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