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10 September, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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Police efforts to manage traffic yield good results

SAUGATO BOSU
Police efforts to manage traffic yield good results

In Dhaka’s lawless streets, where the word “discipline” is something unheard of, people seem to be paying heed to the rules of the road at least for the nonce, as Traffic Month 2018 has been under way in Bangladesh since Wednesday. Traffic police have been proactive and are bending over backwards to ensure road safety. Mobile teams of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) and mobile courts of the Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA) are leaving no stone unturned in their mission during this Traffic Month.

A month-long traffic awareness programme is being conducted at the behest of DMP commissioner Asaduzzaman Mia from August 5. Four departments of the Traffic Division are currently busy checking vehicles without fitness certificates and licences at 40 points in the capital. As many as 322 scout members in every shift are helping keeping cars in line, stopping haphazard parking and ensuring the use of zebra crossings and footbridges.

Talking about the initiatives to bring discipline to the streets in Dhaka, Asaduzzaman Mia said: “A total of 121 bus stops have been set up in the city. Buses cannot stop wherever they like except at these designated stops.”

Visiting different areas in the capital yesterday, this correspondent found that the city is slowly becoming disciplined. Even though some people were seen flouting the rules, traffic police appeared more determined to bring them to book.

A makeshift bus stop has been erected at Farmgate to help passengers take shelter while waiting for buses. Commuters appreciate the new initiative as this has put an end, at least for now, to the abrupt ways of how people get into the buses.

Bus helpers were seen pointing to commuters to come to bus stops and board the vehicles at Farmgate.

Vehicles were seen plying on lines in a disciplined manner at Kawran Bazaar, Bangla Motor and Shahbagh. Pedestrians were seen using footbridges instead of jaywalking.

Rover scouts were seen trying to explain the traffic rules to the pedestrians. If someone escaped their notice, they quickly went and persuaded them to make them follow the rules of the road.

Office-goers, business-owners and street vendors expressed satisfaction as things improved on the roads in Dhaka.

Meanwhile, no human hauler was seen from Farmgate to New Market and from Mohammadpur to Farmgate routes from September 6 till yesterday. People had a trying time as they used to rely on these vehicles that plied on these routes. This mode of transport charges lower fares and covers longer distances.

Commuters and pedestrians told The Independent that they had seen a marked improvement in the perennially chaotic traffic system. The authorities must take some hard decisions for stopping the legunas (human haulers), they added.

Commuters say there are a lot of human haulers because of inadequate public transport. The number of mass transport vehicles has to be increased, they said.

Drivers and helpers of human haulers must be given proper training. Stricter traffic laws and monitoring should be enforced to control these vehicles, they added.

However, the scenario at feeder roads in the capital was different as rickshaws and other light vehicles were stopped on VIPs’ roads. Earlier, the system was accepted, but now law enforcers have become stricter to make travelling on the main roads hassle-free.

The scenario from Mirpur Road from Shyamoli to New Market and on Motijheel Road from Gabtoli to Farmgate has changed. Bus drivers followed the DMP’s instructions; bus helpers were seen closing the doors and opening them only where there is a signboard like ‘bus stop’.

Mofiz Uddin Ahmed, joint commissioner of traffic (south) of the DMP, told The Independent that their traffic divisions were working hard and the situation would come under control soon.

Ahmed said: “Our four divisions are working at 40 points in the capital. After the Eid, the pressure of vehicles has increased. It’s difficult to control all areas properly. We are strictly monitoring human haulers, and anyone flouting the traffic rules will be severely dealt with.” Over 17,000 cases have been filed and more than Tk. 1 crore collected in fines from those who violated the traffic rules during the past four days.

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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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