Tuesday, 5 July, 2022

Ferry ghat hassles coming to an end

  • Esaraf Hossain
  • 15th June, 2022 09:50:33 AM
  • Print news

With the opening of the long-awaited Padma Bridge on June 25, the plights of the commuters and transport workers of 21 South and South-Western districts are coming to an end.

Commuters and transport workers have been facing immense suffering while crossing the river channels in Paturia of Manikganj-Daulatdea of Rajbari and Shimulia of Munshiganj and Kathalbari of Madaripur.

They have to wait for hours on these ferry ghats. The sufferings mount during bad weather and the Eid rush.

There was no end to the suffering of the passengers, especially the truck drivers, who used to cross the Padma river through the Daulatdia ferry terminal in Goalanda upazila of Rajbari and Paturia point of Manikganj, transport workers said.

Police and BIWTA sources said during the Eid holidays, a large number of passenger buses, private cars and micro-buses carrying holidaymakers from 21 districts in the south-western region rush towards Paturia-Daulatdea and Shimulia-Kathabari ferry ghats.

The BIWTC and the police authorities have been struggling to cope with the extra pressure.

BIWTC authorities said hundreds of vehicles wait to cross the river channel every day, creating several kilometres long tailback and causing untold suffering for the commuters and transport workers.

Mohiuddin Russell, Assistant Manager of Commerce at Paturia Ghat Point, said the Paturia Ghat area had been experiencing heavy traffic for a long time.

According to the commuters, the traffic congestion becomes severe during weekends and holidays. People are seen waiting on the highway under the open sky for hours from Zero Point of the terminal to the Dhaka-Khulna highway in extreme heat.

Sanjay Biswas, a truck driver from Magura district, was stuck on the highway recently. He said, “I hadn't eaten anything since morning. The helper cannot drive. I had to pull the car little by little so I was sitting in the car all the time. I don't know when I will cross the ghat. ”

No sleep, no food, no bath. You have to stay on the road all day, then wait for hours for the ferry again.

But we are very happy and excited about the Padma Bridge. We will not need to wait for hours at the ferry ghat to cross the river once the Padma Bridge is open.

Once the mega bridge is open, people can easily travel from Dhaka to Khulna within four hours via the Padma Bridge.

Experts said currently, it takes 1-3 hours to cross the Padma River by ferry from Mawa to Jajira and many people have to wait for a longer time to cross the river, which is a waste of time.

But once the Padma Bridge opens, such suffering will come to an end. It will also be proved to be a boon for businesses and traders.

Syed Aslam Ali, Additional Chief Engineer of Roads and Highways Department (Khulna), said “Currently it takes 6-7 hours to go to Dhaka from Khulna depending on the time needed to cross the ferry. But via the Padma Bridge, people can cross the river within 20 minutes after paying the toll and as a result, it will take only four hours to travel to Dhaka from Khulna.”

The sufferings of people at the ferry ghat will end forever, he added.

South-Western districts including Jessore, Khulna, Bagerhat, Satkhira, Jhenaidah, Kushtia district, Benapole, Darshana, and Bhomra land ports are already witnessing major transformation ahead of the inauguration of the Padma Bridge.