'I just collect the money on behalf of the organization, and do not have further insight'
The Kalna ferry ghat in Gopalganj is taken over by extortionists, who are collecting money from drivers, in the name of maintaining order of the vehicles as they board the ferries.
The drivers alleged that if they did not pay the workers from Narail Workers’ Union, they halt vehicles for hours causing a major inconvenience.
Although the ferry ghat is under the Kashiani upazila of the district, the Narail Workers’ Union has significant influence over it.
This correspondent on his visit to the ferry ghat on Thursday witnessed that a few workers were collecting Tk20-30, and handing them a receipt of Narail Workers’ Union.
Tabibur Rahman, a collector, said: “I just collect the money on behalf of the organization, and do not have further insight.”
Narail Workers’ Union General Secretary Md Sadek Khan confirmed the allegations, and said: “The vehicles need to maintain order when getting on the ferries. Drivers regularly get into arguments over getting onto the ferry first. So, workers of the union maintain peace, and charge a fee of Tk10.”
Senior Assistant Superintendent of Police (Muksudpur circle) Md Anwar Hossain Bhuiya said he was not aware of the situation, and said: “I will inform the officer-in-charge of Kashiani police station, and direct him to look into the matter.”