Bangladesh Railway has started work to utilize its uncultivated land for agriculture to increase the country’s food production in line with a recent directive from Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
Railway officials said the state-owned transportation agency has about 3,850 acres of uncultivated land across the country that can be used to boost food production.
After a regular cabinet meeting on November 14, cabinet secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam told reporters that the prime minister had asked all relevant officials to increase food production because next year could be critical.
Following the Prime Minister’s directive, the Ministry of Railways held a meeting on Tuesday to assess how much uncultivated land they own and how they can put it to good use.
Md Humayun Kabir, secretary of the railway ministry, has asked the general managers of the county’s two railway zones to send a work plan to increase food production by Thursday.
Asim Kumar Talukder, managing director of Bangladesh Railway (West), told The Business Standard that the prime minister said no land in the country would be left uncultivated. There are approximately 3,500 acres of uncultivated land below the western railroad area.
“We will encourage people to grow different crops and vegetables on the uncultivated land. Also, many people have rented our land but did not cultivate anything there. We will motivate them to grow crops there,” Asim Kumar said. Talukder.
Jahangir Hossain, Managing Director of Eastern Zone of Railway, told TBS that there are about 350 acres of uncultivated land under their authority in Dhaka and Chattogram.
“We will encourage people to lease the railway land to grow crops and vegetables,” Jahangir Hossain said.
Earlier, Agriculture Minister Mohammad Abdur Razzaque requested cooperation from three relevant ministries to grow crops in all arable land purchased by sugar, jute and textile factories and Bangladesh Railway.
The Minister has written to Ministries, urging them to take initiatives to grow cereals, vegetables, pulses and oilseeds on unused arable land under public institutions in order to cope with possible food shortages caused by ongoing global crises.