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Risking lives to hasten journeys

  • Published at 10:55 pm April 2nd, 2017


A long-standing tradition of sorts in Bangladesh is using public transports in the most hazardous way possible. Be it a train, bus, or boat, many people find it in their hearts to clamber up to the top, finding purchase in nooks and crannies. Safety rails and door knobs turn into rails to hold on to. It is a regular sight in the streets of Dhaka, buses so congested that they appear to be oozing people. Knowing full well the risks involved, people find a handhold or foothold to make their journey. The video, uploaded by one Facebook user Istiaque Ahamed Sakib on Traffic Alert page, shows a young man in his late teen years or early 20s clinging to the door of a bus that has been closed to him. He pays no heed to the pleas of the helper and other passengers to dismount. Many people have called him irresponsible and a fool for jeopardising his life. Many have admitted that at certain moments, people have very few options to travel from one location to another. Buses, as the major mode of public transportation in the city, cater to thousands of people every day. As much as people may value their lives, they will also say “time is money.” The young man is almost every bus passenger in Dhaka. This scene will repeat itself tomorrow, and the day after, and the following day.