Electric wires, along with telephone, satellite and internet cables hanging from pillers on both sides of the roads in Sylhet literally cover the sky. The tangled wires hide the beauty of the city and increase the risk of accident.
However, the scenario changed at one of the roads in Sylhet city on Monday when all the power transmission lines in Shahjalal Dargah road was shifted beneath the ground.
The busy road looked totally different after removing the tangled-up wires and electric poles from the area. Pictures of the road went viral on Facebook on Monday night as many of the local people have been praising the initiative by sharing the images on social media.
President of the Sylhet Chamber of Commerce and Industry Abu Taher Md Shoyeb said, "It is an excellent iniative. The road looks more beautiful after removing the hanging elctric wires. Sylhet will look different after implementing this project across the city. This will attarct more tourists."
The Sylhet City Corporation officials said for the first time in the country, electric transmision lines are being shifted beneath the ground. A total of 45km long underground power transmission line will be set up in Sylhet.
The Power Develompent Board said primarilly, underground eletric lines have been set up from Hazrat Shahjalal's Shrine area to Court Point area under a pilot project.
The initiative is a part of a Tk2,053 crore project approved by the Executive Committee of National Economic Council in July 2018.
As a part of the project, electric transmission lines in several areas of the city will be shifted beneath the ground with an expenditure of Tk55 crore. The project, which started in February last year, is scheduled to end by June 2021.
Gradually, the entire power transmission network in Sylhet city will be shifted underground, said project officials.
Director of the project MM Siddiq said, "Under the project, a 22/23 kilovolts sub-station along with 3,500 transformers will be set up and 2,500 kilometres of transmission lines will be shifted underground."
"The government has taken iniatiatives to shift electric wires beneath the ground in all the cities across the country. Survey for this project is underway in other cities. There are 70Km long transmission lines in Sylhet. Primarily, 7km long electric wires have been shifted beneath the ground," said the official.
Ariful Haque Chowdhury, mayor of the Sylhet City Corporation, told The Business Standard that project to distribute power through underground lines has been launched successfully from the Hazrat Shahjal's Shrine area. Wires of different service providers including telephone, internet and cable operators are being removed from the roadsides.
"From now on, any person or organisation cannot dig any road which have underground electric lines without informing the Power Development Board and the city corporation," said the mayor.
Chief Engineer of the Sylhet City Corporation Md Nur Azizur Rahman said, "Setting up underground electric line in Sylhet was a challenging work as it has been done for the first time in our country."