BGB deployed at Shimulia ferry terminal to ensure discipline, Covid health safety rules
The victims who lost their lives in stampedes and heatstroke at the Banglabazar ferry terminal have been identified.
They are, Shilpi, 38, Shariful Islam, 27, Ansar Madbar, 12, Neepa Begum, 35, and Harun Mia, 45.
Bodies of the deceased have been handed over to their respective family members, confirmed Shibchar police officer in charge (OC) Miraj Hossain on Thursday.
He said: ‘The accident took place as the ferries were too crowded thus. The passengers were cramped for space. Wednesday’s hot and humid weather is also responsible for the deaths.
“Those who died included a child, two women and two men. All of their bodies have been handed over to their families.”
Contacted, Madaripur Deputy Commissioner (DC) Rahima Khatun said: “The district administration has provided Tk20,000 to each of the bereaved families for transportation and funeral purposes.”
Earlier on Wednesday, five people died and 50 others injured while getting off from overcrowded ferries on the Padma River bank amid the homegoing rush of hundreds of thousands ahead of the Eid-ul-Fitr.
The deaths were reported in two separate incidents at the Banglabazar ferry terminal in Madaripur’s Sibchar upazila.\
Also Read - 5 killed in stampedes on Padma River ferries
The incidents on two different ferries on the Shimulia-Banglabazar route occurred within a span of two hours, said Ashikur Rahman, a traffic police inspector posted at Banglabazar terminal.
Four people died in a stampede on the Enayetpuri ferry, which docked around 2pm.
“Earlier, around 12 noon, when the Shah Paran ferry reached Banglabazar, one person had died in another stampede,” he added.
The rush of home-goers had started a week ago despite the fact that the government asked all to stay at their present locations to limit the spread of Covid-19, which has killed 12,076 people so far around the country.
BGB keeping watch at Shimulia ferry terminal
Members of Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) have been deployed at Shimulia ferry ghat since Thursday morning to ensure people follow social distancing norms and wear masks.
The ferry ghat is witnessing an unprecedented rush as thousands of migrant workers are leaving Dhaka and adjoining areas for their home districts to celebrate Eid with their families, reports UNB.
Fourteen of the 16 ferries are currently operating on the Shimulia-Banglabazar route. Such is the rush that the ferries are carrying mostly home-bound passengers, leaving vehicles behind.
Assistant General Secretary of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation (BIWTC), Md Shafiqur Rahman said: "The remaining two ferries are being repaired and it won’t be possible for us to increase the numbers on this route."
Ferry services on Paturia-Daulatdia and Shimulia-Banglabazar routes were earlier suspended to curb the spread of Covid-19.
However, the mad rush of home-bound people forced authorities to resume the ferry services.