Published:  02:17 AM, 11 August 2019

No traffic jam on highways: Quader

Road, Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader on Saturday claimed the homebound journey of holidaymakers has been more comfortable compared to the first two days of Eid travels.

"Neither dilapidated road conditions nor lack of coordination by Road Transport Department are responsible for tailbacks.  There's no traffic jam on highways, but vehicles are moving slowly, no one can deny that," he said. He said, "I've not yet received any information about traffic jam. What's happening is vehicles are moving slowly," he said, replying to a question on the sufferings of Eid holidaymakers at the Mohakhali Bus Terminal. It is the cattle-laden vehicles that are causing traffic congestions on highways, not the dilapidated road conditions, he said.

The minister said, "Bangladeshis consider the sufferings experienced on the homebound journeys a part of the Eid festivities. However, there is no way to deny that there are some problems." He also said transport companies charging homebound passengers extra fares will be punished. When asked about schedule collapse and allegations of charging additional fare, Quader said he had heard that some vehicles were running late. Meanwhile, a 75-km tailback was created on Dhaka-Tangail highway on Saturday morning, inflicting sufferings on thousands of Eid holidaymakers. The gridlock was created from Gorai in Mirzapur upazila to Bangabandhu Bridge due to heavy pressure of vehicles, said police super of Tangail Sanjib Kumar Biswas.

Earlier on Friday, there was about a 100-km tailback on the same highway. Sanjib Kumar said the huge traffic congestion on the highway from Ashulia to Bangabandhu Bridge was created due to the pressure of Dhaka-bound cattle-laden trucks and vehicles of Eid holidaymakers.

Hundreds of buses that left the capital for their destinations were stuck in a long tailback at Paturia ferry terminal on Friday. "The gridlock has thrown everything into disarray," said Zillur Rahman, assistant manager of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority's Aricha office.

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