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Cyclone Sidr, Nargis, Myanmar, response and resilience of Bangladesh May 18, 2008

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When Cyclone Sidr hit Bangladesh at its southern coast in November 15 2007 at a speed of 215km/h (135m/h) with surge of water 15-20 feet high, ¼ th of the Bangladesh was totally devastated,10000 of human life has been lost and uncountable crops, cattle, houses, jobs and business had been damaged.


‘Waterlord’ -view of a journalist on the challanges faced by Bangladeshi people May 12, 2008

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Robert D Kaplan in a legthy discourse ‘Waterlord’ in Atlantic.com described the challanges faced by the Bangladeshi people in a country raged by flood and cyclone. (more…)

Bangladesh after Hurricane Sidr-through the eye of an aid worker May 10, 2008

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CLIMATE, Sidr.
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Nicki Bennett is an American aid worker, has been in Bangladesh for 6 months since Cyclone Sidr struck Bangladesh. Here is an account of her in NY Times on life and reality of the people of
Bangladesh in Sidr affected area […]

an ordinary citizen

Hurricane Sidr and an anonymous philanthropist January 31, 2008

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CLIMATE, Sidr.
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He has donated 130 m dollars(Tk 910 crore) for the victims of Hurricane Sidr which devastated the south of Bangladesh on 15th November, 2007. (more…)

After Hurricane Sidr a different Eid December 21, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CLIMATE, Sidr.
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More than a month is over- Hurricane Sidr devastated the south of Bangladesh. The life of the affected are still in disarray. The memory of the deadly night are still haunting them. The pain of the loss of children, parents or other relatives are still with them. They are to survive on the food supplied by the government or nongovernmental agencies. They are to sleep in the makeshift shelters not enough to lessen the bite of the cold of the winter nights. Their means of livelihood destroyed and they are searching ways to restart a new life.

In such a sad scenario, the festival of Eid ul Azha came.. When the simple daily living is difficult how they will buy cattle and sacrifice them and enjoy the festival.

Bangladesh is trying to overcome the grief by sharing with the Sidr victims. The religious leaders urge the affluent to donate the extra money to the affected people. The government has also taken special steps to collect the meat from the people of the unaffected area to distribute it to the distressed people of the Sidr area. People are donating generously to relief funds of Chief Adviser and of Chief of Army. Many individuals are also physically going to the Sidr area to share their means with the victims.

Probably all these efforts would not be enough to remove the miseries, still on the day of the EID, we pray for all the departed souls and seek strength from Almighty to survive the devastation through patience and sharing.

An ordinary citizen

Hurricane Sidr: acts of kindness December 18, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CLIMATE, Sidr.
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Hurricane sidr passed over Bangladesh at a speed of 220 km/hr with surge of sea water of 15 to 20 feet high on the night of 15th November 2007. It was one the fiercest storm that passed over Bangladesh in its known history. The hurricane was double the size of Bangladesh. More than 300o people died on the night, thousands of livestock lost, hectors of crops destroyed, houses, schools, roads, bridges and culverts destroyed of an area of one fourth of the country.


People from all over the world horrified at the magnitude of the devastation and extend their hand in support. Government and NGOs , international organisations, EU, USA and different UN bodies all involved in the rescue, relief and rehabilitation work. The devastation is so much so that Government with international agencies have to introduce VGF card to 2.6 million families to support food supply for 4 months.

The ordinary citizen, though was not directly affected as he was a little away from the eye of the hurricane, felt extreme agony and sadness in his heart and tried to share the burden of the victims. He personaly and from his family donated cash and cloths for the affected people as most of the people of Bangladesh did.

But the deed he would cherished most is his attempt to create awareness regarding the devasatation of the Hurricane Sidr through the posts in his blog and to discuss different ways and means to combat the effect of hurricane sidr in his poor country.

All these done not as an act of kindness but done out of responsibility.

By the way, my posts on Hurricane Sidr are the most visited posts of my blog so far.

An ordinary citizen

Protecting Sundarbans December 14, 2007

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Sundarban bears the brunt of hurricane

Cost of Hurricane Sidr December 11, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CLIMATE, Sidr.
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Link: Cost of Hurricane Sidr

Reassessing our effort in combating Hurricane Sidr November 27, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CLIMATE, Sidr.

[Personal observation] With the recovery of the initial shock of the catastrophe of Sidr, we can now reassess our effort in combating the hurricane.

As was said , Sidr was one of the fiercest cyclone hit our land in the line of 1970 and 1991 where the number of death was 3,00,000 and 1,50,000 in contrast to 5000 this time. If one compares the number of deaths and devastation it caused, one could acknowledge the impact of initial management before and during the hurricane.

Warning system:

Taking shelter and to remain safe is the first aim of the cyclone affected people. Though the early warning system that was employed by the authority waas appreciated by many, still it was 100% perfect. Many people in the land of the affected area were not informed of the warning where there was no radio and the fishermen who were out in the sea couldn’t be informed because they were not allowed to keep the radio with them.

Even many people didn’t pay timely heed to the warning as the some of the earlier warnings didn’t turned into reality. The warning could be more specific with location, the direction of hurricane, the speed and time of hit. Some people returned back from the cyclone shelter as the cyclone was taking more time than their expectation. In addition the warning in the TV and radio, local sirene and miking could be utilized to aware the people.

Cyclone shelters:

The number of cyclone shelters were found to be inadequate and also it is not uniformly distributed. Some are old and required renovation. More are to be construct with greater height and strength.. Multi-purpose shelter centers with adequate strength should be prepared. Shelter is also need for the live stocks.

Protective dams:

It is reported that the protective dams along the costal belt is not uninterrupted. In many areas it is disrupted and is not of adequate height. As the height of water surge was 15 to 29 feet high, the dam should be reconstructed atleast upto 20 feet high.

Rescue operation:

Immediately after the cyclone and surge, rescue of the people is important .Rescue begins with the survived people in search of their kith and kin. As the devastation was massive, our rescue operation also took longer time. Still many people are missing, many bodies are floating in the water. Were our rescue operation was rapid and effective, Though our effort was magnified buy the participation of the Army, many may doubt the overall perfection.

Relief effort :

The task of relief is a gigantic one. You need to reach the affected people approximately lcs in number on the very first day from the angle of urgency where some of the area are inaccessible, some requires waterway and some may need helicopter service. The civil government trued to over the impossible by the support of the army, navy and air force.

It takes days even for the army to reach the remotest area. To keep the continuity of the relief is another indaunting task which is not possible for the government to bear singularly. Here comes the need of participation of all of the nation. All people, including the businessmen responded wholeheartedly but the response from our politicians were reserve. As the scale of devastation was high and the relief may be needed for months together for millions so different countries and international organizations extended their support which is praiseworthy. A good coordination and full commitment on the part of the government and volunteers are needed to make the relief work successful. The government has already decided to introduce VGP card for relief for 26 people for 3 months.


Rehabilation is also a long tem effort. The Government declared many schemes for rehabilitation of the affected persons. The people will be given soft loans for their businesses. The banks were asked to erase the interests and delay the recovery. The NGOs also decided not to recollect their loan.

Support for housing would be needed.

Special allocation has been made for building the educational institutions.

Infrastructure development:

Road, Dams and culverts will be needed to be reconstruct for economic activity, for relief work and for economic development.

Maximum utilization of relief fund and prevention of pilferage:

The government should try to utilize the fund from internal and external sources and prevent any pilferage.


Media both print and electronic is playing a laudable role in combating the aftermath of sidr. They are vitually working as the advanced colum inthe rescue and relief operation. Some complain of exageration was made from the Law and Information Adviser Barrister Moinul Hussain. But there is also little room for the government to feel complascence.

The media should not only cover the distress of the people, they should also highlight the contribution of different action groups governmental and non- governmental in the report. Though differentNGOs are working parrallel to the government agencies, their effort was not highlighted in the media.

Disease, prevention and treatment:

The diarrhoea and other waterborn diseases will gradually increase in number and may pose a dangerous challenge to the authority. There is big scarcity of pure water throughout the area and government could not yet able to ensure pure drinking water to the many areas. The number of medical teams in the paper is imressive but the actual number of working doctor is still inadequate and the remote area is less covered.

Hope :

In the background of this great disaster and distress, we hope that people of Bangladesh will stand up on their feet earlir than expected.


An ordinary citizen

Links from personal reading:

1) 26 lac VGF card planned for 4 months

2) Govt needs 2 lakh MT foodgrain assistance

3) 15 pc coastal land to be inundated


UN report on Hurricane Sidr:2.2 million people will need to be fed for 3 months November 24, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CLIMATE, ECONOMY, Food Security, Sidr, UN.
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Prothom Alo published the UN report: 22 lac people will need to be fed for 3 months. The report was prepared by UN after assessing the damage in 9 major districts in the souther Bangladesh badly affected by Hurricane Sidr.

An ordinary citizen

Links from personal reading:

1) Devastated shrimp industry
2) WTO praised local volunteers

Hurricane Sidr and call of the sea November 23, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CLIMATE, ECONOMY, Sidr.
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[Personal thoughts] Hurricane Sidr blew over Bangladesh and killed thousands of people, damaged houses, shelters, crops and cattle. People lost their last belonging.

But Sidr should not defeat us. Our people already showing signs of recovery. Life is coming back to them with hopes and aspirations. We need to continue our support till they could stand on their feet and manage to earn their own livelihood.

But Hurricane Sidr also open up the sea to us. Through our imaginary eye, we can see its origin deep in the sea whirling on itself, coming with great speed to us and ultimately hit our coastal belt and pass over the body of Bangladesh.

We never thought of the sea so close to us, we never thought of the sea occupying our whole imagination in such a way.

Millions of people along our coastal belt from Teknaf to Mongla are dependent on sea for their living. Fishing in the sea is one of main occupation of these people. Imagine the courage- most of them with a simple wooden trawler in a group of 10-12 men they net fish in the deep sea. The fish are serving the need of our local as well as foreign market.

Many of the people along the coastal belt are doing shrimp culture. The shrimps are exported for earning foreign cash.

The bed of the sea also supply us with gas. Sango Gas Field in the is one of the major gas field in our country deep in the sea.

The Sundarban, the great mangrove; Kuakata where the sun sets in most wonderful way, Nijum island where thousands of deer trade fearlessly, Cox’s Bazaar, the longest beach and Sand Matin , the coral island in the southeast point of Bangladesh- all are rich with natural beauty.

Can’t we explore our sea a little more and a little more deeply. We can modernize our fishing, develop the industry, our government can explore the possibilities and our entrepreneurs can invest in it.

Can’t we improve our tourism? Not only the coastal sites but we can extend our tour deep into the sea to see eye to eye with the Sidr!

We can increase our exploration of the gases under the bed of the sea. The bed of the Bay of Bengal is reach with natural gases.

Can we think at this point the need of a deep sea port. The Caretaker Government in its early months was enthusiastic about the deep sea port but later they abandon the idea on the assumption that it will take decades to complete the project and it will cost millions of dollar and our political leaders were also critical of the idea. Few people have the foresight to see beyond his surrounding and few people has got the courage to take up a task what most people would dare to imagine. The deep sea port may support our transactions, export and imports, fisheries, tourism etc.

We like to be close to the Sidr. Sea is calling us.

An ordinary citizen

Links from personal reading:

1) Scientists warn of agrarian crisis from climate change

2) Food security

Struggle of a country with the impact of Hurricane Sidr November 22, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CLIMATE, POLITICS, Sidr.
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memory-hunts.jpgIt was difficult to reach the remostest area in the first few days. But now Army claimed that they has reached the most distant area. It is also a struggle to help the cyclone victims.

But mere reaching to the last resort is not the end of the effort, equally important is to sustain the support and the ordinary citizen is at his wit’s end how the Government would able to feed millions of people even atleast for few days. As the Chief Adviser said it needs the participation of all. Bangladesh alone will not be able to cope with the task. The ordinary citizen is feeling a litttle relief with the introduction of VGP card to supply sustain relief to the affected families from Dec 1. But what about before that?.

It is a crisis of humanity. The world as a whole would need to participate actively. The world is responding by supplying relief by different means. Local organisations have come forward. Yesterday the ambassadors and representative of different countries visited the affected area to see the magnitude of destructioin. They were apalled by the scene of devastation of human and nature.

Finance Adviser is worried regarding the impact on the economy in the coming future with two consecutive floods and a devastating cyclone in the same year.

In this struggle for survival, the response and perticipation of the politicians of the country is very poor which is in total contrast to the perception of the common people. They (the old politicians or the old system of politics) are proving themselves unworthy in the new situation of Bangladesh.

Today’s Links: Daily Star, Prothom Alo, BBC, CNN,

An ordinary citizen

Hurricane Sidr: Appeal of Chief Adviser,looming health crisis and tales of survival November 21, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CLIMATE, Sidr.
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Chief Adviser to the Caretaker Government Dr. Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed has composed himself, after initial shock and engagement, to appeal in a televised speech all people, irrespective of party and opinion, to come forward in aid of the affected people and to bravely face the national catastrophe of Bangladesh. Though the businessmen and other professionals have responded rapidly, the politicians are dwindling on conditions such as withdrawal of emergency and declaration of Southern Bangladesh as disaster area.

Bangladesh also appeals to the world and international organizations for more help. Though many predicts that the Sidr will destabilize Bangladesh economy, Finance Adviser is hopeful that Bangladesh will be able to overcome the situation.

Huge health crisis is on the way with the scarcity of pure drinking water.

Small and medium enterprises are totally damaged. They need financial support.



Deadly devastation is also resounded with the tales of survival of people.


Links: Daily Star, Prothom Alo, BBC, CNN, Yahoo.


An ordianry citizen

In support of Sidr victims, in support of Bangladesh November 19, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CLIMATE, Sidr.
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hurricane-sidr-4.jpgWith With the death toll rising and total devastation of the south, Bangladesh is trying to come out of the destruction.


The rescue, relief and rehabilitation are being coordinated at the highest level- the Advisory Council of the Care Taker Government. Chief Adviser has cancelled weekly holiday on the day after the Cyclone night. The Ministry of Relief and Rehabilitation and Disaster Management, Ministry of Establishment , Ministry of Telecommunication and Ministry of Roads and Communication are given special instruction to carry on the work for rescue, relief and rehabilitation of the people and the to reconstruct the infrastructure of the affected area.

The Bangladesh Army, Navy and Air force personals are also participating parallel with the civil administration in the rescue and relief operations of the cyclone victims. Dozens of Army helicopters, ships and boats are engaged in the operation.

Chief Adviser Dr. Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed and Army Chief Lt Gen Moeen U Ahmed are visiting the area. Yesterday President Yazuddin distributed relief to a affected area.


Red Cross and other international NGOs and National NGOs are working among the destitute people. The expatriates abroad are collecting donations for the victim.


But the major political parties are conspicuously absent from the effort. While the people and Government are physically and emotionally engaged in the rescue and relief work, they are busy with their own agenda.


USA, UK and many friendly countries are extending their hands for the Victim and for Bangladesh.


World Bank and other international organizations also pledge for donation for Bangladesh.


We hope that with the support of people and with the participation of the Government, national and international organizations and friendly countries Bangladesh will be able to overcome the catastrophe.


For further reading please link Daily Star, Prothom Alo, BBC, CNN, Yahoo.



An ordinary citizen

Hurricane Sidr strikes Bangladesh November 16, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CLIMATE, Sidr.

Following are the images of Hurricane Sidr as it crossing from the Bay of Bengal through Bangladesh.

hurricane-sidr-coming.jpgPlease link for details Daily Star report on Hurricane Sidr.

An ordinary citizen

Updated: 31 Dec 2007

Related posts in the blog:

Bangladesh devastated by Hurricane Sidr
Trail of devastation of Hurricane Sidr
In support of Sidr victims, in support of Bangladesh
Hurricane Sidr:Loss of life, struggle for survival aand task of rehabilitation
Struggle of a country with the impact of Hurricane Sidr
Hurricane Sidr and call of the sea
Un report on Hurricane Sidr:2.2 million people need to be fed for 3 months
Risk and compensation of climate change
Reassesing our effort in combaing Hurricane Sidr
Bangladesh is facing most critical phase in its history
Cost of Hurricane Sidr
Hurricane Sidr: acts of kindness
After Hurricane Sidr: a different festival
Hurricane Sidr and a man without a name

News link:
Donors propose $4b plan to fight natural calamities