Tuesday, 7 February, 2023

Stop murder on roads

Stop murder on roads

Though the entire nation disappointingly got used to unnatural deaths on roads, two road accidents on Friday shook the already numbed emotion of the people. One of these two accidents happened in the capital’s Shahbag area, in which a housewife named Rubina fell from a motorcycle on the road after being hit by a private car. Her clothes got stuck in the wheels of the car. The driver, a former associate professor of the University of Dhaka, dragged her from there to Nilkhet. Turning a dump ear to the shout from pedestrians, the teacher accelerated the car, instead of stopping. On the same day, five people, including a father and son, were killed when a covered van rammed into an eatery on the highway in Manirampur upazila under Jashore district.

The major cause of road accidents often blamed is the drivers’ educational qualification which makes them unable to understand modern road instructions. However, when an educated person causes an accident but reacted in such a brutal way, then what is to say?

The mindset of drivers is to be blamed more for the death procession on roads. Moreover, there is something what makes drivers and policymakers indifferent to traffic rules. Negligence of duties by police and road transport authorities mainly encourages reckless driving and the operation of unauthorised vehicles, contributing to a large number of fatalities. Allegations are there that police failed  to check violations of rules and regulations while BRTA is said to have been issuing licences to unskilled drivers in exchange of bribes. But the factor that must be blamed most is the absence of stricter laws and the failure to implement those properly. It is frustrating that the government could not enact the complete draft of the Road Transport Act 2018 just because of the protest and influence of transport workers and owners. As a result, transport workers and owners are often seen giving a damn about what the media and laws say.

But how long do we allow such anarchy and continue to incur a family, social and economic loss? The policymakers must think about the country’s welfare, instead of political goals. There is no way but to enact stricter laws and implement those to halt the death procession on roads. The sooner they realise it, the better.