Blind Bangladeshi fisherman’s disappearing home

The island of Bhola is home to 1.5m people, and half of its land has been eroded in the past 20 years.

The disappearing island of Bhola, Bangladesh’s largest, is home to one and a half million people. Half of Bhola’s land has been eroded away in the past 20 years. Now, those who live near recently-erected flood and erosion barriers worry these aren’t strong enough, and that neither the barrier nor their homes will survive the upcoming rainy season. 

As the rainy season draws near, local fisherman Nuru Miah and his mother worry that their lives will be upended once again. They have had to move five times already. Nuru is blind, and feels humiliated to ask his neighbours for help.

“People are very kind to me,” he told Al Jazeera. “But I already have to depend on people because I’m blind – now I have to depend on them for housing, for utensils, for bedding, everything. It’s too much.”

Locals like Nuru and his mother who cannot affort to move further inland end up living perpetually on the edge.

“It takes three to four months to find a new place to stay each time the river takes the house away,” Nuru’s mother told Al Jazeera. “We stay here for a month, there for a month. We have to do anything and everything to get by.”