Operation of private owned passenger buses on different routes remained suspended for the last five days, much to the suffering of passengers in Dinajpur.
Initially, the transport workers on Tuesday started a strike, opposing the newly enacted Transport Act.
They resumed plying of buses on different routes on Wednesday morning but, at around 11:30am, bus owners and workers stopped running their buses protesting the operation of six double-decker buses of Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTC) on Dinajpur-Ghoraghat, Dinajpur-Rangpur and Dinajpur-Panchagarh routes.
Due to the situation, many people are taking risky rides on battery and shallow engine run three-wheelers to travel to their destinations.
These three-wheelers are carrying passengers to Phulbari, Parbatipur and Birganj upazilas of Dinajpur and Saidpur of Nilphamari district, from Phulbari Bus Stand, Dinajpur Government College intersection and Dosh Mile area of Kaharol upazila of Dinajpur.
“Due to the strike, I am travelling on battery-run three-wheeler instead of bus to attend my office in Parbatipur upazila,” said Azmal Hossain of Balubari area in Dinajpur town.
Passengers at Hili immigration port are also facing to reach their destination due to the suspension of bus transport.
However, buses of Dinajpur-Dhaka route are plying.
Contacted, Bhabani Sankar Agarwala, president of Dinajpur Bus Owners Group, said, “Double-decker buses of BRTC started plying different routes on Wednesday although there is no permit to run the buses on inter-district routes. Those can be operated in city areas only.”
“Bus owners and workers will not operate the vehicles until the dispute is settled. The deputy commissioner [DC] of Dinajpur can settle the issue through discussion with the authorities of BRTC, bus owners and transport workers,” he said.
This correspondent tried to reach Dinajpur DC Mahmudul Alam through his mobile yesterday afternoon but it was found off.