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Dhaka Tribune

Porters turn into coercers

Update : 31 Jul 2013, 05:43 AM

People travelling to southern parts of the country by river ahead of Eid are being blackmailed by the porters at terminals.

Coolies are demanding extra money from every passengers as ""Eid Bokshish."" Sometimes they even compel the passengers to pay extra as "Bokhsish."

Visiting the terminal on Monday, a Dhaka Tribune reporter found a group of coolies standing in front of the terminal gate around 1:30pm.

At that time, a passenger named Selina Haq, a teacher of Little Flower School in Jurain in the capital, arrived by an auto rickshaw with her husband Muhibul Haque.

Soon they got out of the vehicle, a group of porters surrounded them and started nagging to carry their luggage.

Selina's husband refused to give their luggage. Then the group moved away, but all of a sudden a porter""” Imran tagged on his nameplate""” came back to the couple and demanded Tk200 as ""Eid Bokhshish.''

When Muhibul refused to pay, the porter threatened the couple by saying if they do not pay the money they would not be able to enter the ghat.

Then they locked into a bargain and the couple accept defeat and move forward after paying the coolies Tk200.

Muhibul told the Dhaka Tribune: "I just gave the money to reduce the hassle."

Thousands of passengers are also facing porter's illegal charge for extra money. The workers, in the name of helping the passenger, have been charging huge amount of money.

If any passenger refuse to pay and want to carry luggage by themselves, the porters misbehaves with them. The coolies sometime misbehaves in front of law enforcers. The passengers usually pay to get rid of the annoyance of the porters.

Abdul Aziz, officer-in-charge of Sadarghat police outpost, claimed they deployed police at every point of the terminal to ensure safe journey for passengers.

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