Public transports flout health safety rules

Most of the public transports across the country are allegedly carrying passengers in full seat capacity without maintaining health safety regulations.

Allegations say that most of the road transport authorities, despite realizing extra amount of fare on top of the regular fixed fare, are operating in full seat capacity violating the government directives to keep seats vacant to allow social distancing inside the transports.

Passengers said it is illegal to realize almost twice the regular bus fare when all the seats are occupied. 

In the capital, passengers on many transports were found sitting next to each otherviolating the government order.

The passengers travelling on long-distance buses are also seen protesting when extra fares are realized by different bus operators.

Sources from Sylhet, Chittagong, Barishal, Rajshahi and Jashore reported that most of the buses operating on inter-district routes were found carrying more than 50 per cent passengers of their seat capacity and charging extra fares.

Earlier in June, the authorities resumed the services of public transports which remained shut since March 26 to contain the spread of COVID-19.

However, when the bus owners proposedrealizing twice the amount of the fare keeping 50 percent of the seats empty, the government had approved a 60 per cent increase. 

Visiting some main thoroughfares in city’s Mirpur, Farmgate, Shahbagh, Banani, Uttara, Natunbazar, Badda, Rampura, Kalshi and Gabtali areas, most of the public transports were noticed being crowded, in some cases, many of the passengers were also found standing.

Meanwhile, Jatri Kalyan Samity has demanded withdrawal of realizing extra fares and also urged the authorities to enforce maintaining the health safety guidelines to prevent coronavirus transmission.

The general secretary of the Jatri Kalyan Samity Mozammel Haque Chowdhury demanded these at a press statement on Tuesday.

The statement said, ‘Public transport owners are not maintaining the health safety guidelines set by the government.’

The BRTA Chairman Nur Mohammad Mazumder told Bangladesh Post that they have been operating mobile courts to check the violations in the metropolitan cities by their executive magistrates and requested the divisional commissioners to operate mobile courts at all districts.