Importance of river in Bangladesh
According to Banglapedia, there are 700 rivers flowing in Bangladesh and the total length of those rivers is about 24,140 kilometers.
There are 58 transboundary rivers in this country. A lot of rivers are flowing in this little country, so, it is called the land of rivers. The longest and largest river in this country is Meghna.
The top rivers of Bangladesh are Padma, Meghna, Jamuna, Brahmaputra, Karnafuli, Tista etc.
Economic importance of Rivers
- Transportation: Inter-districts transportation is made easier by rivers. All districts of this country are not connected with railways or roads. Lots of rivers connected those districts with waterways. The water transportation system has a lower cost than any other transportation. The total length of waterways of this county is 9833 kilometers and from them, 5400 km is usable for all the time.
- Bring alluvium to soil: River brings alluvium which makes our lands fertile. In the time of flood, the river carries those. It enhances the vitality of our land and increases production. So, rivers help us to ensure food security.
- Fisheries: Our rivers are full of fishes. From ancient times, the main food of Bangladesh is fish and rice. So, fishes fill our demand for food. The fish Hilsha has a great demand for home and abroad. We also export fishes to abroad and earn foreign currency.
- Irrigation: Under irrigation projects, farmers use water of rivers for agricultural purposes. In winter, there are hardly rains here. So, irrigation is the only way of cultivation. The most important irrigation projects are the Tista project on Rangpur, Karnofuli project on Chattogram, Ganaga-kopotakkha project, etc.
- Hydroelectricity: There is a hydroelectricity project in kaptai over the river Karnofuli. It contributes to our national electricity grid.
Although rivers have great economic importance, it has some side effect too. The poor people get helpless in the time of the flood. Their life becomes lamentable.
Flood hinders the production of crops. River erosion makes people landless.
We should have more and more researches with rivers on the flood, control, irrigation, and hydroelectricity. We can use rivers to accelerate our economic development.