IRLP or the Ecological Approach to Rivers? – by Nazrul Islam

Source: Economic and Political Weekly

This paper begins by summarising the criticisms of the Indian River Linking Project expressed by scholars from India and other countries of the subcontinent. It then asks the question as to why this project has been launched despite apparent weaknesses. The paper shows that IRLP is a culmination of the commercial approach to rivers that sees rivers as objects to be “conquered” and “consumed”. The paper notes that time and experience have made this approach outmoded, and a new, ecological approach towards rivers has emerged. According to this approach, rivers should be appreciated for what they are, i e, as progenitor of various ecosystems and cultures. The ecological approach encourages harvesting river resources in a way that does not affect fundamentally the natural course and flow of rivers and the ecosystems and cultures they sustain. The paper notes that, in view of their strong tradition of reverence towards rivers, the people of south Asia can play a prominent role in championing the ecological approach.

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Unless the intenational community acts cohesively to address this issue, the result will be devastating for Bangladesh environment and ecology!

1 reply

  1. Islam Teaches Preservation of Universal Ecology and Supports all deliberations and efforts to that effect.

    Although, the referred paper appears to back date in 2006; yet the issue in its core is worth a Common-Constant-Concern (CCC) for all those who think good for humanity.

    Basic Concept:-

    Any human indulgence(s) that cause disruption(s) and/or adversely alters the cohesion of the natural arrangement(s); affecting the Plantation and Human Progeny; either on land or in water is considered a DISORDER by Islam.

    The following two Quranic References are so very direct; describing in the generics:-

    CROPS = Plantation

    = Wherever it occurs (on the globe or beyond – as the plans are for the space)

    Human Progeny = Human Being

    = of any colour, race, ethnicity or location; tall, short, big or slim; old, middle aged, young, toddler, infant or foetus; male, female or eunuch; sick or healthy.

    Land = anywhere on the globe or beyond

    = plain, plateau, wet, dry, low or high

    Water = anywhere on the globe or beyond

    = deep or shallow; slough, lake, river, bay or ocean

    Reference # 1

    And when he is in authority, he runs about in the land to create disorder in it and destroy the crops and the progeny of man; and Allah loves not disorder. 2:206

    Reference # 2

    Corruption has appeared on land and sea because of what men’s hands have wrought, that He may make them taste the fruit of some of their doings, so that they may turn back from evil. 30:42

    Indus Basin Treaty signed between India and Pakistan (1962) is a good example of Human Indulgences that adversely affected the natural balance of Ecology; particularly on the side of Pakistan.

    Encroachments to the natural water-ways and Infringements over their capacities have already caused extensive damage to the Pakistani, Indian, Bengali and Egyptian populace.

    There should be more voices in support of the deliberations and efforts for the Preservation of Universal Ecology.

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