The advance sale of bus tickets for the upcoming Eid started on August 7
Residents of Dhaka city are rushing to buy advance tickets of buses and trains to go to their villages and hometowns to celebrate the forth coming Eid-ul-Azha and holidays with their families.
Long-route bus operators started the advance sale of tickets last Tuesday, considering that the Eid will be celebrated on August 22.
Bangladesh Bus Truck Owners’ Association Vice-President and Shymoli Paribahan Managing Director Ramesh Chandra Ghosh on Monday had said that they would sell advance tickets for August 16-21.
The Eid day is, however, yet to be finalized based on moon sighting.
Operators have said that they will keep selling tickets until the owners order them to stop.
However, in the inter-district bus counters at Kalyanpur, Shyamoli and Gabtoli, passengers claim that the bus operators are creating an artificial shortage of tickets. Operators are allegedly opting to sell tickets to those who are willing to pay double or triple the price.
Many passengers at those spots on Friday also claimed that that they were being forced to pay double for the tickets of air conditioned (AC) buses.
Kamrul Islam, Shyamoli Paribahan's ticket seller at one of its Kalyanpur counters, brushed off the allegations, saying: “We have enough tickets for the Eid travellers. What we don't have are enough drivers.
“One of the reasons behind this is that many are unable to drive on long routes as they don’t have the proper licences.”
One of the passengers, requesting anonymity, alleged that the staff at Hanif Enterprise’s counter charged high amounts, taking advantage of demand of advance tickets.
As part of its efforts to curb road accidents, Dhaka Road Transport Owners’ Association has decided not to run any bus on contractual basis in the capital since Thursday, which they identified as one of the main reasons leading to rough driving on the roads.
The sale of advance bus tickets for the Eid holidays was supposed to begin last Sunday, but it was postponed as bus services on long routes were suspended due to a student movement demanding safer roads.
Private bus operators resumed their services after the nationwide protests ended on Monday.
Despite the movement of the students and subsequent steps of the authorities, at least 11 people in nine districts were killed in separate road accidents between Thursday night and Friday evening.