The representatives of Khulna civil society have demanded specific commitments for the development of coastal people to include in the election manifesto of various political parties to deal with the harmful effects of climate change on the eve of 12th National Parliament Election. They highlighted that the crisis in life and livelihoods of the coast of the country is constantly increasing due to the harmful effects of climate change. Since then, every year natural calamities have aggravated this crisis. In this situation, specific commitments are needed to protect the life and livelihood of the coastal people.

Discussion meeting on ‘Manifesto of Coastal People’ held on October 05, 2023 at Khulna CSS Ava Center, Khulna organized by LEDARS together in cooperation with Coastal Voice of Bangladesh and Sundarban and Upokul Surokkha Andolon. The discussion meeting was addressed respectively Advocate Mr. Sujit Adhikari, General Secretary of District Awami League, Khulna, Mr. K. M. Ashraful Alam Nannu Joint-Convener of Khulna District Jatiyatabadi Dal, Mr. Taimur Hossain Shaheen Vice President of Jatiya Party, Khulna Branch, Mr. Delwar Uddin, Member Secretary of Workers Party, Khulna district, Mr. Janardan Dutta, Convener of Bangladesh Samajtantrik Dal-BASAD, Khulna District and Mr. SA Rashid CPB General Secretary of CPB. The discussion meeting was presided over by Mr. Gauranga Nandi, Bureau Chief of Kaler Kantha, Khulna and was moderated by Mr. Nikhil Chandra Bhadra, Coordinator of Sundarban and Upokul Surokkha Andolon. The meeting also addressed others Mr. Mohan Kumar Mondal, Executive Director of LEDARS, Mr. Khairuzzaman Kamal, President of Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists, Mr. Sheikh Ashraf Uz Zaman, President of Khulna Development Committee, Advocate Mr. Johirul Islam Polash, PP of Women and Children Tribunal of Khulna, Ms. Sutopa Bedyga, General Secretary of Women Rights Forum, Khulna, Mr. Mahfuzur Rahman Mukul, Coordinator of BELA and representatives from teachers, journalists and others.

Mr. Gauranga Nandi, in his welcome speech said that our political leaders talk about all the problems but do not want to talk much about the crisis of coastal people. But coastal people have many major problems. He urged the political leaders to work for the coastal people. Mr. Mohan Kumar Mondal, Executive Director of LEDARS presented a picture of the suffering of coastal people through multimedia. He said that the government needs to take various initiatives and make a grand plan to solve the crisis that the people of the coastal region are facing due to climate change. In the meeting, Mr. Nikhil Chandra Bhadra raised some specific demands to be attached in the manifesto of the political party in the upcoming 12th National Parliament Election for the development of the coastal people. These are includes- Form Coastal Development Board; permanent solution of safe drinking water; undertake a house a shelter construction project; declare the coastal areas as disaster prone; protect the Sundarbans, protection of the coast; reconstruct and maintain sustainable embankment.

All the speakers in the meeting emphasized that the adaptation process should be increased to deal with the harmful effects of climate change. During taking up government projects, the welfares of the coastal people who are always at the risk of disasters should be given priority in future. For this reason, the representatives of all the civil society demanded to include specific commitments in the election manifesto of the political parties in the upcoming 12th National Parliament elections.