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Transport movement exceeds time limit amid passenger onrush

Published : Monday, 2 August, 2021 at 12:00 AM  Count : 377

As long route transports moved on highways for transporting workers returning to workplaces exceeding the government set time limit till Sunday noon, city bus service that was forbidden to ply within the capital also kept on running in utter defiance of government order.
Vehicles were seen plying on Dhaka-Mymensingh and Dhaka-Tangail Highways after 12pm yesterday.
According to our correspondents, a number of public transports were seen picking up and dropping off passengers at several points on the highways. However, the short time permission of  government on transport movement caused a massive tailback of around 25 kilometers on the Dhaka-Tangail Highway adjacent to the Bangabandhu Bridge.
Seeking anonymity, a highway police officer said
    if they get instructions from the high-ups, they will take action against transport operators.
Sudden government decision to reopen export-oriented factories from the first hour of August 1 amid lockdown left thousands of workers in the lurch.
In the absence of public transport, workers suffered immensely on their way back to their workplaces, mainly in the capital, Savar, Gazipur and Narayanganj, throughout Saturday.
On Saturday night, a circular from the Press Information Department (PID) said public transport would be allowed to operate till noon on Sunday to facilitate the workers' return to work.
As public transport was allowed till noon, workers of export-oriented factories were rushing to their workplaces in Dhaka and adjacent areas, causing massive traffic congestion on Bangabandhu bridge.  
"After bus services resumed last night for a short time, several thousands of vehicles from the northern districts approached Bangabandhu bridge creating a 25km tailback from Hatikumrul to Bangabandhu Bridge," said, Md Shajahan Ali, officer-in-charge of Hatikumrul Highway Police Station.
Under huge rush, vehicles are moving very slowly on the bridge, the OC said, adding that the highway and district police are trying to keep the situation under control.
Rush of the workers on the highway will continue for one to two days more, he added.
Meanwhile, many passengers were seen boarding trucks and mini trucks paying extra fare ignoring health safety rules.
After the government allowed all export-oriented industries and factories to reopen from August 1, workers had crowded at Kazirhaat ferry ghat since early Saturday. Due to the heavy rush, most of the ferries were unable to carry vehicles. But the situation changed on Sunday.
Sabbir Rahman, an official of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) at Kazirhaat ghat, said, "As public transports were operating, there was no congestion at the ferry ghat. Most of the ferries are carrying trucks on Kazirhaat-Aricha route since morning."

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