Fines and jail term are ad hoc measures | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, August 08, 2015 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, August 08, 2015

Editorial

Fines and jail term are ad hoc measures

Get rid of unfit vehicles

The Jatiya Sangsad committee on home affairs formed a sub-committee to find solutions to the capital's appalling traffic situation. The three-member committee, led by ruling Awami League MP Abu Sayeed Al Mahmud, has been asked to submit recommendations before the parliamentary body within three months. Meanwhile, the BRTA, following an HC order to stop the plying of all unfit vehicles, fined drivers and owners of several vehicles up to Tk 65,000 for not having licences and proper documents. In addition, eight drivers were jailed, for seven days to one month for driving without a licence, according to an official of the BRTA.

While it's heartening to see that the HC order is having an effect but we think that penalising drivers and owners of vehicles is not the right course of action when freeing roads of them is aimed for. Actions of the BRTA seem to be incompatible with the spirit of the HC directive that clearly reflects the urgency of removing unfit vehicles from the streets.

In fact, short-term measures can perpetuate the practice of resorting to fake licences and allowing dilapidated vehicles to ply on the streets. As such, steps must be taken to root out the causes behind issuance of fake licences. Moreover, an effective system of identifying and categorising unfit vehicles must be put in place, if we are to truly rid the streets of these ill-maintained vehicles and preserve public safety.      

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