The planning minister said most village clashes occur due to land disputes, and digital land zoning would solve such problems
The government has taken initiatives to categorise lands across the country based on quality.
The categories include agriculture, housing, commercial, tourism, and industrial development.
A project has been launched to prepare a land use plan by developing a digital land zoning map based on mouzas and plots.
On Tuesday, the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec) approved the project titled "National Digital Land Zoning Based on Mouzas and Plots" at a cost of Tk336.6 crore utilizing government funds.
The project was approved at a virtual meeting chaired by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
After the meeting, Planning Minister MA Mannan revealed detailed information about the approved projects during a press briefing.
He said most clashes and killings in villages occur due to land disputes, and digital land zoning will solve all these problems.
"With this objective in mind, the national digital land zoning project will be taken up across the country to compile databases based on mouzas and plots for efficient field-level land management," he said.
Mannan said that under the project, separate units will be formed to provide training on zone-based land use, and to implement public awareness campaigns to ensure these land zoning-based activities continue.
He said it would be easy to know the nature of a land if zoning was done.
"Zoning will reveal whether the land is khas, vested, cultivable or a wetland."
Zakir Hossain Akanda, member (secretary) of the Division of Agriculture, Water Resources and Rural Institution under the Planning Commission, stated that the briefing work would be done under the new project in coordination with the one currently underway to digitize lands across the country.
"Once the project is completed, no one will be able to build whatever and wherever they want. Planned land use will be ensured," he said.
Under the project, there will be 56,349 mouzas of 4,562 unions under 493 upazilas in 64 districts. The project is expected to wrap up by June 2024.
Four projects approved
Mannan said Ecnec approved four projects on Tuesday, including old and new, at a cost of Tk3,996.45 crore.
Of the amount, Tk943.65 crore will be expended from government funds, and the remaining Tk3,052.8 crore will be collected in the form of project aid from foreign sources.
The Minister said that the first amendment to the ongoing project (of developing waterways from Chattogram to Ashuganj via Dhaka) was approved after increasing the cost by about Tk150 crore.
The cost of the first amendment to the project titled "Bangladesh regional inland water transport project-1" was estimated at Tk3,349.42 crore. At the time of the project's approval in 2016, the cost was estimated at Tk3,200 crore.
Mannan said that this project was undertaken to improve the capacity and security of the naval corridor in Chattogram-Dhaka-Ashuganj area for the smooth transport of passengers and goods via inland waterways. The World Bank is providing a loan of Tk3,052.80 crore for the project.
Under the project, maintenance and navigability of 850 kilometres of waterways will be maintained by dredging the main rivers and tributaries in the Dhaka-Chattogram naval corridor in Ashuganj, Narayanganj, and Barishal. By installing and maintaining various types of naval equipment, it will be made fit for the uninterrupted plying of vessels throughout the year.
The Planning Minister said the cost of the project had spiked due to the increase in the number of service packages and the volume of work under the project, inclusion of new items, an increase in the cost of some packages, recruitment of additional manpower, and fluctuation in the US dollar exchange rate.
The Bhairab river re-excavation (phase 2) project approved at the meeting will cost Tk237.56 crore. In addition, a project to re-excavate canals in Begumganj, Chatkhil, Senbagh, and Sonaimuri to mitigate waterlogging issues was approved at a cost of Tk71.87 crore.