Buses struggle to find passengers
The streets of Dhaka city were found deserted on Thursday as hundreds of thousands of people left the capital over the past week ahead of the Eid-ul-Fitr holidays.
The deserted scene became a reality as thousands of people left the capital to celebrate Eid with their families, violating government directives against travelling amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
The holidaymakers had to find alternative measures to go to their village homes as there were no long-haul buses because of the ongoing Covid-19 restrictions.
The city’s busiest streets remained unusually silent since Thursday morning as there were no traffic jams, for which Dhaka is notorious. However, this is a common scene during Eid every year.
Not many vehicles were seen plying the roads since the morning, leading to the rare scene of no tailbacks, no mechanical noise or overflowing crowds -- decreasing both noise and air pollutions.
One or two public modes of transport were seen but even seats in those were empty.
Usual overcrowded areas of the city such as Motijheel, Gulistan, Paltan, Arambagh, Fakirapul, Sayedabad, Kakrail, Shahbagh, Banglamotor, Karwan Bazar, Panthapath, Dhanmondi 32 and 27, Shyamoli, Mirpur Road, Farmgate and Manik Mia Avenue were found absolutely deserted, reports Bangla Tribune.
In most of the areas, some rickshaws were only seen plying the main streets.
Nazim Uddin, the driver of a Monjil Express bus, said they were struggling to find passengers as most of the city dwellers had left for their village homes.
Saying he had pulled in Tk270 only since the morning, Nazim lamented: “I don’t know how much we’ll get and how much we’ll give the owner at the end of the day.”
On the other hand, media worker Musa Ahmed found the empty streets a blessing.
He said he had reached Badda from Bangla Bazar within 15 minutes, which takes him around an hour on a typical day.
“There are no buses on the streets, no people. I arrived at my office without any hassle,” Musa added.
Bangladesh is set to celebrate the Eid-ul-Fitr, one of the biggest religious festivals of Muslims, on Friday, marking the end of the month of Ramadan.
Saudi Arabia is celebrating Eid on Thursday, along with many other countries in the world.
Bangladesh generally celebrates Islamic events a day after Saudi Arabia. But thousands of people of many villages in different districts are also celebrating Eid on Thursday, in line with their age-old tradition of celebrating the holy day along with Saudi Arabia.