With the rise in fuel price, the government has revised the bus fare fixing the new rate of Tk. 2.20 per kilometre on long routes, 22 percent higher, and Tk. 2.50 per kilometre in Dhaka and Chattogram city areas, a 16.27 percent hike. Though the rate has come to effect yesterday, passengers’ suffering has not reduced, since they are stilled charged higher than the fixed rate and the number of buses on different routes was less than the demand.
According to a report of this daily published yesterday, a shortage of public transport caused untold suffering for commuters in the capital and many parts of the country in the wake of the recent oil price hike. Bus operators have allegedly started to overcharge the passengers defying the fare rate fixed by the government and agreed by the transport owners. The main reason behind such a chaotic situation is the government is yet to publish the chart of new fares and the bus operators are yet to hang the new fare chart on buses. In addition, there were few attempts from the authorities’ part to force bus operators and passengers to obey the new tariff.
But the most unfortunate fact is that the authorities concerned, most of the time, fail to smoothly implement such a decision. It was totally a mess to revise transport fares after increasing fuel price a day earlier, which caused the suffering of commuters. If adequate number of magistrates was deployed and law enforcement agencies played an effective role, the chaotic situation could have been avoided and public suffering would be less. Therefore, it is expected that the authorities concerned will take a lesson from the current situation and will handle such type of situation smartly in the future, if such a situation arises.