Water transport owners, after a meeting on Sunday, decided to implement the government-fare chart by increasing the current fare by 20-30% during Eid trips.
The meeting was held at the Inland Water Transport Owners Association’s passenger service office in the capital and was presided over by ruling Awami League leader Mahbubuddin Birbikram.
Among others, Jatiya Party lawmaker Golam Kibria Tipu, Barisal Chamber of Commerce and Industries President Saidur Rahman Rintu, vice presidents of the organisation and other leaders of the association attended the meeting.
In the meeting it was decided that the water transport owners will operate special trips from five days before Eid and will continue 10 days after, and will execute the government fixed fare chart during the 15 days, Rintu said.
He said booking for cabin seats will start from July 26, and every day during special trips, six to 11 triple deck launches will provide services from each end on the Barisal-Dhaka-Barisal route, considering the rush of the passengers.
During the 15 days of special trips, the one-way fare for each passenger on the Barisal-Dhaka-Barisal route on deck will be increased from Tk250-270 from the present rate of Tk180-200, fares per passenger on sofa-seats will be increased to Tk600 from present rate of Tk450-500 and fare of per passenger on cabin-seat will be increased to Tk1,000-1,200 from present rate of Tk800-850.
Saidur Rahman Rintu claimed that the government fixed Tk267 per deck passenger of launch and four times more for a single seat in normal cabin on the 169km one-way long route.
However, he failed to give any satisfactory answer on the issue of profit with lower fares and fewer passengers on usual trips, when asked why they were increasing the fare by 20-30% on every occasion of Eid with the rush of passengers.
Gopal Chandra Majumdar, assistant general manager of BIWTC and in-charge of the Barisal station, said they will also operate special trips on the occasion of Eid. Schedules and fare charts would be announced in mass media soon.
He said now, passengers of BIWTC vessels pay Tk750 for a first class cabin seat, Tk450 for a second class cabin seat and Tk120 for each deck seat on a single trip on the Dhaka-Barisal-Dhaka route.