In the port city of Chattogram, traders in the Chaktai-Khatunganj area, one of the largest hubs for consumer goods in the country, claimed damage of goods worth hundreds of crores of taka in shops and warehouses due to the impact of Cyclone Sitrang.
To ascertain the degree of damage, the Chaktai-Khatunganj Wholesale General Traders Welfare Association, in its emergency meeting on Monday, formed a five-member committee.
President of the organisation, Jahangir Alam, was made convener of the committee, it's General Secretary, Md Mohiuddin, the member secretary, and Vice President Khorshed Alam Alamgir, Executive Members Md Harun and Haradhan Chowdhury, were made members.
The committee was asked to submit an assessment report within the next three days.
Jahangir Alam, convener of the committee, told The Business Standard on Tuesday, "According to traders, they have faced huge losses as the tidal surge triggered by cyclone Sitrang and tidal waters have damaged commodities in several thousand shops and warehouses in the business hub.
Most of the shops in the market were affected directly due to inundation caused by the cyclone. Many of them tried drying their damaged products in the sun to minimise the loss but have failed.
Moreover, it's a matter of concern that tidal water is now entering the wholesale market frequently.
He also said, "I have been visiting affected shops since morning and collecting information about cyclone-induced damages. We hope to finish this by next Thursday. If the enquiry is completed, all the information will be presented in a press conference on that day."
Later, recommendations will be sent to the authorities concerned to take necessary action, he added.
Due to the convenience of transporting goods using the Karnaphuli River, this market was established near the river bank in the 14th century. The market developed here mainly for canal and river facilities.
However, in the last decade, water enters the area frequently due to a rise in the water level of the river.
Besides monsoon, the effects of natural disasters, such as cyclones and floods, quickly hit the wholesale market.