Monday, January 22, 2018 | ePaper

Chaos on city roads

Slow pace in dev works bring miseries to dwellers

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Sagar Biswas :
Traffic chaos persists in the capital Dhaka, as it lacks an organized traffic system. Such gridlock is now an everyday experience, leading to a massive disruption in city dwellers' life.

Yesterday's traffic jam added to their woes.  The residents of Naya Paltan, Purana Paltan, Bijoy Nagar,  Motijheel, Dilkhusha, Shahbagh, Kakrail, Malibagh, Moghbazar, Karwan Bazar, Bangla Motor, Farmgate, Shewrapara, Taltola, Mirpur and Pallabi witnessed a severe congestion of vehicles.

Also, digging of major roads contributed to such chaos. Presently, the situation has taken a turn for the worse as uncoordinated road digging is going on by different utility service providers amid construction of flyovers alongside other development works.

Most of the city roads and lanes are now facing such digging problem, either for implementation of any development project such as Metro Rail or cable and pipe installations by the utility services, such as WASA, Titas, City Corporations and DPDC.

 "It is killing unlimited working hours and reducing commuters' energy and working ability.  I don't understand why government doesn't pay heed to such a burning issue," said an NGO official Mustafizur Rahman, expressing dissatisfaction.

Many sufferers said traffic is usually at its worst during the time when people go to or return from work. It is also bad during public examination periods. This causes people to be late at work, and also at examinations.
Aminur Rashid, a resident of Mirpur -11 said the digging work could have been done right before the roads were repaired. "But, things have become horrible. Now you cannot even move on foot in the area, let alone passing by motorized vehicles," he said.

 In Dhaka, around half of the city dwellers go to work on foot, while the rest do so using private cars, buses, taxies, motorcycles, rickshaws or other modes of transports. Traffic congestions here remain a perennial problem which causes hundreds of hours to be wasted on the streets and economic loss as well.

The city dwellers, however, alleged that buses are the worst offenders while drivers show no regards whatsoever for the safety of their passengers or other pedestrians as well as vehicles.

"Alongside the major development projects, at present, more than 30 per cent of roads have been illegally occupied by hawkers, salesmen and the shopkeepers. The pedestrians also use roads due to lack of spacious footpaths," said an official of Traffic Department, Dhaka Metropolitan Police.

Experts pointed to multifarious reasons for traffic congestion of Dhaka city. The main reasons include the layout of the city and its master plan, over population, excessive traffic density, inadequate and unplanned road construction, heterogeneous vehicles and inadequate public transports and manual haulers and rickshaws.

Railway crossings, insufficient parking arrangements, illegal constructions on pavements and footpaths, construction materials dumped on the streets, poor traffic management system, a tendency of violating traffic laws, unplanned development works by authorities such as road repair at inconvenient times, poor drainage systems and water logging during rainy seasons, special occasions and events, schedules of VIPS stopping ongoing traffic and using the wrong side of the roads and the anthropological inheritances of the people also contributed to the mess in the city's traffic system, they said.

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