Dhaka is gradually gaining its old form as its residents have started coming back to their city after celebrating Eid-ul-Azha with their near and dear ones at village homes.
Bus terminals, including Sayedabad, Gabtoli and Mohakhali, were abuzz with returnees on Saturday. Rail and launch terminals were also crowded with returnees.With three-day Eid holidays, most of the holiday makers got additional two days off — Friday and Saturday.
On Saturday, highways were free of traffic congestion while the streets of the capital saw few buses, CNG-run auto-rickshaws and rickshaws.
Mamun Khan, a private service holder, said: “I have come to Dhaka from Mymensingh within one hour and 50 minutes. We found no traffic jam on the higway.”
Fatima Nur, another returnee who came from Cumilla, said: “It took only one hour and 45 minutes for me to reach Dhaka from Cumilla. This is because, the road was free.”
At Kamalapur Railway Station, almost all trains reached Dhaka from different districts about half an hour late.
Jihan Hossain, a banker who returned from Chattogram by train, said: “I have come back to Dhaka along with my family members on Saturday as my office will reopen on Sunday.”A considerable number of people have come back to the capital by launch on Saturday, according to sources at Sadarghat launch terminal office of BIWTA.
BIWTA officials said around 70 launches reached Sadarghat launch terminal from 23 routes from 7:00am to 11:00am on Saturday.
However, ferry services on Shimulia-Kathalbari route were disrupted for two hours from 4:00am to 6:00am due to poor navigability in the Padma River causing immense sufferings to passengers.
Khandaker Shah Khaled Newaz, assistant general manager of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA), said: “Ten small ferries are in operation while the bigger ones wait on both sides of the river.”
“Eighty-seven launches and 400 speedboats are also transporting passengers on this route,” he said.
At bus terminals and railway stations as well as Sadarghat launch terminal, people expressed their satisfaction for smooth and hassle-free journey this time. However, some of them complained about extra fare demanded by the owners.
Dhaka is expected to get back to its usual form on Sunday as a large chunk of people returned to the capital on Saturday.
Every year, a large number of people, residing in the capital for the purpose of job, business and study, go to their village homes to celebrate Eid with their near and dear ones.