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Excessive revenues allegedly being realised in Goalpata collecting from Sundarbans

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21st-Mar-2017       
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Ahsanul Amin George, Back From Sundarbans :
Excessive revenues are reportedly being collected in the field of collecting goalpata from the Sundarbans.
Sources said, Bawalis (Goalpata collectors) are collecting goalpata from three zones of the west division of the Sundarbans without any obstacles. The first trip collection was already brought to the locality. But the forest division authorities are allegedly realizing excessive revenues from the Bawalis this year much more than that of the previous years.
It is learnt that Bawalis are losing their eagerness to collect goalpata due to shrinking and decreasing demand of collecting forest things. The forest division was strict this year during the full season of collecting goalpata. At first the authorities were unyielding in respect of giving permission for collecting goalpata from the Sundarbans. Of course, permission was given later on after passing one month of the season. With a view to relax the pressure from the forest, the authorities decided so, as they claimed.
Forest division sources said, one zone in Satkhira range and the two other zones are in Khulna range of the west zone of the Sundarbans for collecting goalpata this year. 237 BLCs were given for collecting goalpata from Shibsha and Arua Shibsha zones. bawalis have taken permission for collecting 1,16,346 mounds goalpata from these two zones at first event. Bawalis have started taking permission for collecting goalpata for the second event from January 28, 2017 and collecting goalpata will be continued up to March 30 this year.
Eagerness of the traders is less than that of the last year and as such the target may not be fulfilled, it is apprehended.
According to the information of the forest division, some conditions were fixed regarding collection goalpata. The conditions are- Boats loadable more than 500 mounds goalpata will not allowed, middle level leaves and supporting leaves are not allowed to cut at any cost and  incentive observation will be conducted so that nobody could smuggle other things in the guise of collecting goalparta.
Md. Alam Sana, a Bawali of 1no. Koyra village in Koyra upazila of Khulna district said, he has been collecting goalpata for around 18 years, but he never seen so strictness of the forest division as like as this year. "I've no eagerness like previous times in respect of collecting goalpata due to decreasing uses of goalpata, pirates' attacks, filling canals inside the forest and moreover no valid and invalid opportunities in the forest like previous periods", he added.
Shajahan Sheikh, retail trader of goalpata at Koyra upazila area said, demands of goalpata are not available now like previous periods, due to less sale, some retail traders kept stock.
Some other Bawalis said, goalpata trading is not now so profitable according to the investments.

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