A lack of basic facilities is creating hazards for the shop owners and traders of the Langalbandh Bazar under Shailkupa upazila of Jhenaidah and Sripur upazila of Magura.
The largest weekly market of the south-western district of Jhenaidah and Magura, which is widely known for wholesale of crops and corrugated tin, is in a bad shape due to lack of maintenance. The market earns several millions in revenue a year. A transaction of Tk100m is done each week at the market.
Langalbandh Bazar sits twice a week where traders from three districts – Jhenaidah, Magura and Rajbari – run their business. But most of the shops running in the century old market have become unfit as they have not been repaired or maintained in the last 48 years, claimed some members of the Langalbandh Bazar Banik Samity.
The land of the market was registered under the 'khas land' by the revenue department of the government in 1965. We have filed a writ petition against the registration of the private lands under the Khas Khatians-1. We are supposed to appear in the court upon notice but notices have not been served for quite a long time, keeping us deprived of the rule of law, said the business leaders of the samity.
As a result, the shop owners cannot expand their shops in spite of having a number of problems.
During monsoon most of the lanes inside the market go under water creating tremendous hardship for the traders and customers. Moreover, rain drops fall through the roofs of many of the shops, said, Dipak Kumar Kundu, a pharmacy owner trader of the market.
Langalbandh Bazar Banik Samity President Golam Kuddus said: "About 900 business men are running trade in this market. They have to incur enormous loss due to frequent fire incidents. Fire fighters cannot enter any of the lanes or roads inside the market as they are too narrow."
Jute merchant Haradhan Kundu said at least 20,000 people work in the market but lack of public toilets make the situation embarrassing.
An associate of the lease holder of the market, Abdul Kuddus said they had purchased the yearly lease of the market for Tk38,00,000.
Upazila Executive Officer of Sripur, Apurba Kumar said: "We are trying to improve the condition of the market with the existing fund."