- Located in Meghna River in Ashuganj, Brahmanbaria
- Residents waiting for electricity for four decades
- Total population around 6,000
- Most of the inhabitants are fishermen
- Electricity to be supplied through submarine power cable
- Cables will be set up through the bed of the river
- Electricity connection will be set up within four months
People in Char Sonarampur in Brahmanbaria are coming under electricity coverage after four decades of waiting despite being only one kilometre away from Ashuganj Power Station as the government will begin electricity supply by submarine power cable through the Meghna riverbed.
Already the Power Development Board has set up overhead lines of 11,000 volts on both sides of the river.
According to sources at the Power Division, the submarine power cable will be set up through the riverbed in the Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) system from the BOC ghat area of Meghna River in Ashuganjsadar. The PDB has signed an agreement with the contractor company DrillTech International in this regard. The project will cost about Tk11 crore.
The contractor company has begun gathering the necessary machinery at the BOC Ghat area of Meghnasince on 12 February. The work of setting up the submarine power cable will start in the next two to three days, the sources said.
Residents of Char Sonarampur said that people have been living in the char for more than four decades. Most of the nearly 6,000 inhabitants of the char are fishermen.
According to people concerned, currently, 11 units of AshuganjPower Station are in production, which add more than 1,500 megawatts of electricity to the national grid. On 27 August 2020, the Power Division declared Ashuganjan upazila with 100% electricity coverage.
However, the people of Char Sonarampur have so long been deprived of electricity despite being part of the upazila.
Although the char has a community clinic and a government primary school, the absence of electricity has long been a major drawback for the people living here. However, some well-off families in the char use solar power as an alternative energy source. Even so, they face problems during the rainy season.
Shital Barman, a resident of Char Sonarampur, told The Business Standard, "We have been hoping for electricity for many years. Our children have to study by lighting candles or kerosene lamps as there is no electricity. Now, if we get electricity, the situation will improve."
Sumon Das, another resident of the char, said, "The people of the char are very happy at the news of electricity. We want the authorities to complete installing the submarine power cable as soon as possible."
Sultan Mahmud, executive engineer of the Power Development Board, said, "The contractor has an obligation to complete the work within 120 days of the signing of the contract. Necessary pieces of machinery have already started arriving. We hope the contractor will complete the installation of the submarine power cable on time."
"As soon as the work is completed, we will provide electricity connection in the char," he added.