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Ban on battery-run rickshaws: Owners, drivers go on hunger strike

  • Published at 09:53 pm October 2nd, 2019
battery-run rickshaw pullers protest
Battery-run rickshaw drivers and owners in a hunger strike in Barisal city on Wednesday, October 2, 2019 Dhaka Tribune

They announced their program under the banner of "Battery Chalito Rickshaw Sangram Committee (BCRSC)" in front Ashwini Kumar Hall in the city on Wednesday morning

Over a hundred battery-run rickshaw drivers and owners declared a hunger strike protesting a ban on operating their vehicles on five major roads in Barisal city.

They announced their program under the banner of "Battery Chalito Rickshaw Sangram Committee (BCRSC)" in front Ashwini Kumar Hall in the city on Wednesday morning.

Around 3,000 battery-run rickshaw drivers, owners and their family members fell on hard times after the Barisal Metropolitan Police (BMP) and Barisal City Corporation (BCC) imposed the restriction against operating their vehicles on five important roads of the city from October 1 to make roads safer and improve traffic management, said protestors.

The five roads are, Zila School to Jailkhana crossing, Kakoli to settlement office crossing, Girjamahalla Road, Vatarkhal to DC office crossing, and City Corporation to Chawker Pol crossing.

Dr Manisha Chakrabarty, adviser of the movement committee and district convener of Bangladesher Samajtantrik Dal (BSD), participating in the strike said: "The BCC and BMP have already damaged 500 battery-run rickshaws by removing their batteries and engines. Most of these families are now starving for lack of means of earning a livelihood.

Dulal Mallik, one of the leaders of the committee, said: "The BCC should improvise new rules for battery-run rickshaw and it is inhuman to restrict them without arranging alternative means of earning for them.