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8 March, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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Rally stalls traffic in capital

Quader gives explanation
Staff Reporter
Rally stalls traffic in capital
While the photo on the left shows severe tailback at Shahbagh intersection in the capital, the other on the right shows acute shortage of public transports at Karwan Bazar causing sufferings to the commuters in the capital yesterday, thanks to a mammoth rally organised by ruling Awami League at Suhrawardy Udyan in observance of historic March 7 Speech of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Independent/Focus Bangla Photos

The Awami League (AL) rally held at Suhrawardy Udyan in the capital yesterday resulted in huge traffic snarls on various roads of the capital right from the morning.

The rally, held to mark historic March 7 Speech of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, also caused sufferings in some other areas where people faced absence of public transports.

All through the day, traffic congestion was seen in places around Suhrawardy Udyan, as police shut off Shahbagh, Kataban, Bangla Motor,

Farmgate, High Court, Mirpur and a few other intersections to facilitate the passage of the arriving AL supporters.

AL General Secretary Obaidul Quader, however, sought cooperation from the city people to observe historic March 7.

“Please be patient and cooperate with us in observing the historic March 7 day even if you have to face sufferings on the roads,” urged Quader, also the road transport and bridges minister.

“Previously we held grand receptions for (Prime Minister) Sheikh Hasina on Saturdays considering the sufferings of general public. We even held the founding anniversary of Bangladesh Chhatra League on a weekend though the founding anniversary fell on a weekday,” he said during the rally.

“But observance of some days such as March 7, February 21, December 16 and March 26 must be on due dates. So I seek the cooperation of Dhaka people to make this rally a success,” the AL general secretary added, saying: “This day is the property of all Bengalis. This day can't be changed. We held other programmes on public holidays -- Friday and Saturday. But this date can't be changed”.

The momentous March 7 speech, delivered by Bangabandhu in 1971, worked as the foundation of the Liberation War that led to the birth of the nation. It has been included in the Memory of the World International Register—a list of the world's important documentary heritage maintained by UNESCO.

Since morning, people started gathering in and around Suhrawardy Udyan, where the ruling party was to hold its rally around 2pm. Awami League president Sheikh Hasina addressed the gathering.

A large number of people were seen heading for the rally venue from different parts of the city after holding processions. This resulted in traffic congestion on different roads of the capital.

There were not too many buses on the streets as most transporters had withdrawn their services. Ordinary people had a harrowing time reaching their destinations. Long tailbacks were seen in Manik Mia Avenue, Mirpur Road, Karwan Bazar, Bijoy Sarani, Paltan, Moghbazar and adjacent areas.

Vehicles remained stranded in traffic tailbacks in the Farmgate area from noon, as AL leaders and activists from different parts of the city and nearby districts proceeded to the rally venue in small trucks and busses.

Nazmus Shakib, who was sitting in a bus at Shyamoli for one and a half hours, said he had set out early to reach his destination in Paltan as the traffic situation would be bad because of the rally. Nevertheless, he was stuck in a traffic jam at Shyamoli.

Many people were seen standing on both sides of the roads, at bus stations and other stoppages, waiting for vehicles that were few and far between.

Amit Kumar, a private bank employee, said he had been waiting for one and half hours to get a bus, but none had arrived.

Roksana Begum, a corporate official, said she was going to Malibagh on official work. but had to get down from the bus because of the severe traffic jam.

Many who were stuck in buses said rallies by big parties should be held away from the city centre. They said police should also notify in advance the roads that would remain off limits to commuters and specify the time during which they would be out of bounds.

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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