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| Dhaka, Thursday, 18 January 2018

Md Shamim Rezvi

The Report

2.5 crore work-hours lost a day in traffic jams

73pc people affected mentally, physically

2016-02-07 18:49:19
73pc people affected mentally, physically

The traffic congestions in the city are becoming intolerable day by day. Nobody on the streets knows when they will reach their respective destinations. They spend hour after hour on the streets. On the other hand, the projects undertaken for easing the traffic snarls in the city are not being completed on time. This is also mounting the woes of the commuters.

Traveling different areas of the city including Gulistan, Paltan, Shahbagh, Kakrail, Malibagh, Maghbazar, Science Laboratory, Kalabagan, Dhanmandi, Farmgate, Tejgaon, Kalyanpur, Mirpur, Gulshan, Banani and Uttara it has been found that most of the areas experience nagging traffic jams almost everyday. Even on Friday the traffic jams start increasing after the Juma prayer. The city-dwellers have to start for any destination at least two hours before, whether it is in the morning or at night.

The road to the Hatirjheel in front of the Ajmery Hotel in the city’s Begunbari area is in a very deplorable condition. A large number of vehicles use this road. The road is dotted with a lot of potholes impeding movement of vehicles. From the point in front of the Shamorita Hospital to the Staff Quarter on the Dhanmandi-Panthapath link road there are many unauthorised shops on the two sides of the road.

On the other hand, the Maghbazar flyover is still under construction. For that reason, the traffic jam from the Maghbazar crossing to the Satrasta area remains acute.

Almost on every day except the holiday there is no breathing space for the office-goers going to work at 8-10 am. The reason is that the vehicles they travel on the way to work are caught in traffic jams. The same situation arises again at 5-9 pm every day.

At a seminar organised by the Civil Engineering Department of the Institution of Engineers Bangladesh at Ramna in the city on January 17, Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) teacher Prof Dr Mizanur Rahman said, “About 1 crore 60 lakh people in the city are losing 2.40 crore work-hours every day and it is causing financial losses to the tune of Tk 300 crore. This is affecting 73 percent people physically and mentally.”

One Jahangir Hossain was moving in a haste through the city’s Ramna area on the way to his office at about 8:30 am. He was holding a hotpot in his hand. Talking to The Report, he said, “I must reach my office at Farmgate by 9:00 am. Everyday I have to get down from my bus and walk through Shabag or Ramna area on the way to the office. If I keep sitting in the bus, my boss will not spare me.”

A research report of the police headquarters on the traffic jams submitted to the home ministry says everyday about 3.25 lakh motor vehicles and 7.0 lakh rickshaws ply the city. Of the rickshaws, six lakh and twenty thousand are illegal. The number of transports is far higher than the road capacity. Everyday 317 motor vehicles are hitting the roads. There are 30 types of transports plying the city. As both slow and fast transports are plying the city roads altogether, they are causing the traffic jams.

One Mobashwer Hossain serving with a private commercial house at Motijheel told The Report, “In the afternoon I just walk home from my office. The reason is if I wait aboard a bus, it will take me 2-3 hours to reach Dhanmandi. If I walk, I can reach home much before that.”

Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) senior assistant commissioner for Tejgaon Industrial Zone (traffic) Md Abu Yusuf told The Report, “The piles of garbage on the roads and the potholes are the main reasons for the traffic jams. If the city corporation places garbage containers at different points in the city, the environment will remain clean. The city corporation should have its own quick service teams. This is not the problem only in the Tejgaon area, it is also prevalent in other areas of the city.”

He also said, “We advise small vehicles on the Satrasta-Magbazar road to use the Truck stand-Karwan Bazar route to reach their destinations by spending just half the time. All vehicles can use this route except those on the Maghbazar-Malibagh road. It is possible to reach one’s destinations like Bailey Road, Kakrail, Paltan, Bangla Motor, Shahbagh or any other area on the western side fast using this route. Now there are traffic police deployed on the Tejgaon-Satrasta road after making the Tejgaon truck-stand parking-free. So, now it is possible to reach the Sonargaon Hotel in 10-15 minutes through the road in front of the ATN News or Prothom Alo.”

“There are even vehicles bound for Karwan Bazar, Shahbagh or Panthapath, but they are not using the Karwan Bazar-Truck Stand road because of sheer ignorance,” commented the senior assistant police commissioner.

Ends/ 7, 2016

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