Half fare for students in all metropolitan areas from December 11

Students in all metropolitan areas, including Chittagong, will be able to pay half the usual bus fares from December 11.

Bangladesh Road Transport Owners' Association Secretary General Khandaker Enayet Ullah made the announcement at a press briefing at Chittagong Press Club on Sunday.

Transport owners took the decision to respect the demand of the students who have been protesting for the 50% discount for a long time, said Enayet.

Earlier on November 30, the public transport owners in Dhaka decided to halve the fares for students in the face of heated protests.

Students have been holding demonstrations since then, stating that people studying at educational institutes outside Dhaka city should not be treated any differently.

Like in Dhaka, students in all metropolitan areas will be charged half fares from 7am to 8pm every day, excluding weekends and public holidays, Enayet told the media.

However, they have to be in uniform and produce ID cards provided by their educational institutions to avail of the facility, he added.

On November 3, the government raised the prices of diesel and kerosene by Tk15 per litre, prompting transport owners to enforce an indefinite strike in the country on November 7 demanding a hike in bus fares.

Amid the woes of the public caused by the strike, the Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA) raised the fares of city service and long-haul buses by more than 25%.

Following the fare hike, students started demonstrating on the streets of Dhaka demanding half fares in public transports.

The student protests gained traction with the added demand for road safety following the death of a Notre Dame College Student on November 24.

Since then demonstrators have been blockading different streets and intersections of the city to press home their demands.

On November 29, another student, who took the SSC exams this year, was run over and killed by a bus in Dhaka’s Rampura.

The incident prompted an agitated mob to torch at least eight buses in the area, and further stoked concerns over reckless driving and safety on roads.

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