Hassle-free Eid journey ensured

On the occasion of holy Eid-ul-Azha, all authorities concerned in train, road and waterway transportation are almost prepared to ensure hassle-free journeys for the holidaymakers.

Considering extra demand for public transportation, the Bangladesh Railway (BR), the Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA), the Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation (BIWTC) and the Shipping Department, have made special and additional arrangements along with the regular services for the passengers.

The (BR) authorities will add eight special trains to its 352 regular trainservices. Besides, 1437 passenger coaches will be added to regular train services for carrying additional passengers. According toBR sources, two of those special trains will be operated on Chandpur route, two on Sholakia in Kishorganj, one on Dewanganj route, one for Shantahar, one for Lalmonirhat and one for Khulna routes. 

According to BR officials, usually around 2.77 lakh passengers travel on different routes by train every day, but the number may jump up to about 4 lakh every day during the Eid vacations.

After the completion of selling of advance train tickets, the BR authorities on Monday started selling return tickets. Selling of return tickets for trains will continue up to August 9.

This year, 50 percent of the total railway tickets were sold online and the rest from different railway stations. Not only that, 30 percent tickets will be sold for standing passengers so that none travels on the rooftop of any train. 

However, railway officials said a large number of train tickets still remain unsold. Those tickets could be purchased from the station counters.

Mohammad Aminul Huq, manager of Kamalapur Railway Station, said holidays for all the intercity trains have been canceled to operate 48 additional trips during the Eid vacations. Not only that, considering smoother movement of passenger carrying trains, movement of all the goods carrying trains have been suspended during the vacation period.

The station manager expressed hope that this year the train journey will be safer than on past occasions.

Railway officials said, for the safety and security of the railway passengers, special security measures have been taken through involving personnel from the RAB and police, along with the Railway police.

Along with the private bus services, the BRTC authorities are also prepared with 1,142  buses for the services to the passengers on roads. This year, there were no hassles at different bus counters in capital Dhaka. But almost all the people had to buy bus tickets at extra charges.

Meanwhile, Road Transport and Highways Division (RTHD) has set up a central control room in Dhaka to ensure smooth traffic for holidaymakers during the Eid rush. The control room at BRTA headquarters will remain open 24 hours from August 6 to 17, according to a circular of the division.

Moreover, Road Transport and Bridges Minister, Obaidul Quader, on Monday said all dilapidated roads across the country will be repaired within three days before Eid.

People are already in stress about the ongoing dengue outbreak, so bad road condition should not worsen their situation, the minister said while adding, that if needed, the road repair work will be conducted round the clock.

Obaidul Quader told this to journalists during a briefing at the Secretariat in Dhaka on Tuesday.

The minister addressed the media following a pre-operational meeting on Eid-ur-Azha with representatives of transport owners and workers, law enforcers, local government and government high officials from concerned departments.  

No cattle markets will be allowed by the roads and highways, he said.

Like the Railway, the Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation (BIWTC) will also add 22 special launches to the regular services. Sources in the BIWTC said, usually more than 100 launches ply on 47 routes everyday. But the number of launches will be increased up to 210 considering the demand of the passengers. The special service in the waterways will continue up to August 20.  All the ferry services will be monitored for smoother transportation.