Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader yesterday said bringing back discipline to the transport sector and completing the ongoing mega projects are his biggest challenges now.
“I almost died, but I’m still alive... Insha’allah, I will play my second innings now. I have finished my first innings,” Quader told media as he joined office yesterday after more than two months.
He said projects for metro rail, tunnel under Karnaphuli River and Elevated Expressway have witnessed significant progress. “So, we want to complete these projects.”
Bringing back discipline to road transport sector is a challenge, he added. “It would be my biggest challenge in my second innings. We will overcome it under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina,” he said.
As Quader -- also the general secretary of ruling Awami League -- arrived at his ministry at the secretariat, officials of his ministry and other agencies including Roads and Highways and Bangladesh Road Transport Authority, welcomed him with flowers.
Quader signed some files before joining a views-exchange meeting with journalists in presence of top officials of the ministry, including Road Transport and Highway Division Secretary Nazrul Islam.
ROADS COMPARATIVELY BETTER THIS YEAR
The minister said the condition of roads and highways before Eid holidays is better in comparison to the previous years.
He also announced that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will inaugurate the second Meghna bridge and second Gumti bridge on the Dhaka-Chattogram highway on May 25.
The PM will also inaugurate two bridges, two flyovers and four underpasses on the Dhaka-Tangail highway on the same day, the minister said.
This will significantly reduce rush on both the highways, which usually experience the worst traffic during the Eid holiday rush, he added.
SALE OF BRTC BUS TICKETS STARTS TODAY
Quader said Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation (BRTC) will start sale of advance Eid tickets from today at its 18 bus depots across the country.
The Eid special service of BRTC will run from May 27 to June 10, Quader said.
A total of 1,089 buses will provide services during Eid across the country, of which 649 will run within the capital and its adjacent areas, and 390 will operate within intercity, the minister said.
Apart from this, at least 50 buses will remain on stand-by to meet any emergency needs during the Eid holidays.
On March 3, Quader was admitted to Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) hospital after suffering breathing complications.
Tests revealed three blockages in his coronary artery and he was flown to Singapore for better treatment under the supervision of the prime minister. He returned to the country on May 15.
Quader expressed gratitude to prime minister, his ministry officials, countrymen and journalists for standing beside him during his illness.