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Dhaka Tribune

PM: Road safety not drivers, govt’s responsibility alone

Government is working to build a modern, safe transport network all over the Bangladesh, she says

Update : 22 Oct 2019, 01:25 PM

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said everyone has to perform their own duties towards road safety.

"Ensuring a safe road system is not only the responsibility of the government or the drives, it is the responsibility of all--from pedestrians to all other citizens. All have to perform their own duties," she said on Tuesday. 

The prime minister made the statement while addressing a program marking the National Road Safety Day-2019 at Krishibid Institution, Bangladesh (KIB) organized by the Road Transport and Highways Division.

This year’s theme of the day is “Jiboner Age Jibika Noy, Sarak Durghotona Ar Noy” (Livelihood not ahead of life, no more road accident).

Sheikh Hasina asked all, especially the educated people, to obey traffic rules. "This is very important."

Stressing on the importance of awareness, she said: “Our footpaths are always occupied, these have to be freed (from illegal occupants)."

Turning to illegal and indiscriminate car parking on roads, Sheikh Hasina said while taking approval from the authorities concerned, many shopping malls show car-parking spaces in their designs, but they later sell those as shops.

"As a result, people have to park their cars in front of shopping malls and occupy roads," she added.

The prime minister asked the traffic officials to be strict against illegal car parking on roads and impose fines. "There should be parking spaces and the footpaths have to be freed for pedestrians."

Hasina asked the authorities concerned to stop plying of unfit vehicles on roads. "They somehow make the vehicles fit to run and earn money, this type of attitude has to change."

She also emphasized on preventing bad competition on roads and uncontrolled speed of vehicles to end accidents.

"It is possible to ensure the economic development of a region through ensuring the development of road communications, and keeping an eye on that, we have given our attention to developing the communications system of the country," she said.

She mentioned that the government is working to build a modern, safe transport network all over the Bangladesh.  

"We have carried out lots of development in road infrastructures. We are taking measures to ease people’s movement from one place to another by transports."

She said some 446.70 kilometers of national highways have been upgraded to four lanes or above.  At present, the upgradation of 149 kilometers of national highways into four lanes is underway.

The government has constructed 1,068 bridges and 4,656 culverts along with nine flyovers/overpasses. Eight underpasses have been constructed or renovated while the construction of 82 more bridges is underway, she said.

Sheikh Hasina said the first elevated Metro Rail of Bangladesh, stretching from Uttara 3rd Phase to Motijheel, is being implemented. 

She also mentioned that 46.73-km long Dhaka Elevated Expressway is being constructed, while the construction of 20-km long Bus Rapid Transit stretching from Gazipur to Airport will be completed soon. "We have approved two new Metro Rail projects in an Ecnec meeting recently."

Hasina asked the authorities concerned to take immediate and appropriate stern actions if anyone alters the size of trucks or other vehicles to carry extra goods or passengers. 

Road Transport and Highways Division Minister Obaidul Quader, Parliamentary Standing Committee member on Road Transport and Bridges Ministry Ekabbar Hossain, MP, Chairman of Nirapad Sarak Chai Ilias Kanchan, Executive President of Sarak Paribahan Sramik Federation Shahjahan Khan, MP Secretary General of Sarak Paribahan Malik Samity Khandaker Enayet Ullah and Road Transport and Highways Division Secretary M Nazrul Islam also spoke on the occasion.

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