At least 1,646 buses ply the capital without any route permit, Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) Mayor Atiqul Islam on Thursday said, adding that a drive will be launched against these vehicles from July 1 next.
“At least 1,646 buses ply Dhaka streets and cross the capital without route permit, contributing to creating traffic jam and causing sufferings for commuters. Executive magistrates of Dhaka North and South City Corporations along BRTA will conduct a drive jointly against the buses from July 1 to August 31,” he said.The DNCC mayor was talking to reporters emerging from the 17th meeting of the Bus Route Rationalisation Committee held at the office of the Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) mayor.
Atiqul said, “The buses will be seized and scrapped as they’re creating utter chaos on roads. The problem was created as the bus owners take registration first and start operating those on roads without taking route permit. Now, we want that they have to take route permit first and then registration will be given.”
Speaking about the progress of the bus route rationalisation, DSCC Mayor Sheikh Fazle Noor Taposh, also convener of the committee, said, “We want to start the test run of buses on the first route from
Ghatarchar in Kernaiganj to Signboard in Narayanganj via Motijheel under the bus route rationalisation from September 7.”
He said around 155 buses under two companies -- Rajanigandha and Malancha -- will ply the route after modernisation and rehabilitation of existing buses as per the standard set by the committee.
Taposh also said Bangladesh Bank has granted Tk 100 crore as soft loan for modernising the buses.He said it had been decided earlier to start the test run of buses on the pilot route from April 1 but due a surge in Covid-19 cases, the plan could not be executed.
The DSCC mayor said, “We’ve visited a piece of land at Ghatarchar for making a bus depot. We’ll start the process to acquire 12 bighas of land for establishing a depot. Besides, we’ve completed the tender process for constructing new bus bays, sheds and other facilities.”
He informed that they prepared a draft of contract between the bus owners and the committee and guidelines for running buses on the pilot route. “Our experts’ panel has submitted a report on the four selected sites at Kanchpur, Hemayetpur, Bhatulia and Bhagair of Kernaiganj for construction of inter-district bus terminals and we’re now preparing drawing and design of the terminals,” Taposh added.
On September 9, 2018, the government formed a 10-member coordination committee for bus route rationalisation and bringing all public buses under a fixed number of companies to bring discipline to public transport in the capital.
The DSCC mayor was made the convener of the committee while the DNCC mayor joint convener.
The other members are chairmen of Bangladesh Road Transport Authority, Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation and Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha, Dhaka Metropolitan Police commissioner, public transport expert Dr SM Saleh Uddin, secretary general of Bangladesh Road Transport Owners' Association, president of Bangladesh Road Transport Workers' Federation and executive director of Dhaka Transport Coordination Authority.