There are nearly 4,000 various types of trucks and mini-trucks in Tangail, but the district lacks a terminal where the heavy vehicles can park and their drivers and workers, around 20,000 in total, can rest between trips.
Finding no area authorised for parking, the vehicles have been causing traffic congestion by parking or loading and unloading on vital highways that connect all northern and a large number of southern districts with the rest of the country through the Bangabandhu Bridge. During or after delivery of goods in Tangail town, many of those are clogging up roads in and around the town.
As a result, despite the efforts by the traffic department, quite a good number of areas in the town -- including stadium, old bus stand, Godown Bridge, Rabna bypass, Nagar Jalpai, Chhoy Ani Pukur, Dhaka Road and Baby Stand -- have now taken the shape of mini truck stands.
Trucker Bala Miah, also president of Truck Workers Union in Tangail, said they have no alternative but to park their vehicles by the roads or highways since there is no designated parking area or any truck terminal in the district.
Truck owners and workers do not benefit from parking in unauthorised or unprotected areas as fuel and valuable parts including batteries often get stolen from those areas, he said, adding that trying to keep an eye on possible theft, the transport workers cannot get much-needed rest after a trip. Despite the fact, law enforcers often file cases against them and harass transport workers.
The urgency of a truck terminal in the district was discussed several times at district law and order as well as development coordination meetings held every month. Transport leaders on several occasions also raised the issue to local administration and politicians, but nothing has been done to this effect, the transport leader also said.
Truck owner Jahurul Islam said many truck owners have been paying Zila Krira Sangstha authorities to park their trucks near a primary school in stadium area of the town.
The truck owners have been making such excess payments even though there is no security for the vehicles there, he added.
Although the absence of a truck terminal and designated parking areas are equally causing sufferings to general public as well as the transport workers and owners, the administration and the politicians have so far been negligent over the issue, alleged many transport workers.
Rafiqul Islam, an inspector of traffic (administration) in Tangail, also said parking of trucks by the roads, due to the absence of a terminal, has been causing congestion on the roads.
In order to keep smooth flow of traffic on highways and roads, “traffic sergeants have to file cases against trucks that load and unload goods by parking on busy roads and highways,” he added.
Speaking with this correspondent, Jamilur Rahman Miron, mayor of Tangail municipality and also president of Tangail Truck Owners’ Association, also stressed the need for a truck terminal in the district.
Contacted, Deputy Commissioner of Tangail Shahidul Islam said, the administration has a plan to construct a truck terminal in Rabna bypass area of the town. “Necessary steps will be taken in this regard as early as possible.”