According to local sources, Max Group of Company Ltd is lifting sand from the river in Korfa, Charfukra, Joybangla ferry ghat and Charkalna ferry ghat in Sadar upazila violating the government rule.
The company took responsibility from Bangladesh Railway to repair the Kashiani-Bhatiapara-Gopalganj route.
The company started to repair the route with the sand of four sand quarries of Kashiani upazila after taking lease from deputy commissioner office.
The sources said the company people did not follow the government rule while they were lifting sand from the river.
They had crossed the limit and lifted sand from another place of the river beyond their lease, added the sources.
Locals alleged that the Water Development Board (WDB) has built town protection embankment which is now at risk due to random sand lifting.
Executive Engineer of WDB Mohiuddin submitted a memorandum on August 18, to the deputy commissioner protesting illegal sand lifting by the company men.
Max Group Surveyor Monwar Hossain was told to lift sand following the government rule. But the company did not follow the advice, said Mohiuddin.
Locals also submitted memorandum to the DC protesting the illegal sand lifting.
Dabiruddin of Charkalna area said the company people were lifting sand in their area which was not taken as lease by DC office.
Osman Ali of Charfukra area said flood protection dam in Shankarpasha and Fukra areas got damaged due to unplanned sand lifting from the river bed.
Houses, schools, colleges, madrasas and many other establishments in the area were on the verge of extinction due to sand lifting, said locals.
Locals and the company people got locked into clashes several times over the issue, said sources.
Seeking anonymity, some people in the area said ruling party men were involved with the company men.
When the local people protested the illegal sand lifting the ruling party musclemen including police personnel harassed them.
Selim Khan, a resident of Fukra area, of the upzila, said: “I have lost my cropland near the river due to illegal sand lifting. When I started protesting, police picked up me and tortured brutally.” Later, I got released in-exchange of money, he added.
Firoz Khan, another resident of the area, said: “I am going to loss six acres of land for illegal sand lifting.”
Kamrul Hasan, assistant commissioner of Kashiani upazila, said : “We have alerted Max Company project manager several times, but they did not pay heed to our appeal.”
Abdul Ohab, manager of the company, said they would take steps if there was their fault.
DC Moklessur Rahman said he could not say anything in this regard as he had taken charge only few days before.