Eid tickets in hand of touts | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, August 24, 2011 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, August 24, 2011

Eid tickets in hand of touts

Depriving hundreds of people waiting in long queues for hours, some railway staff were allegedly selling tickets in the black market at the Kamalapur Railway Station yesterday.
Besides, ticket sellers at counters were charging the passengers an extra Tk 30 to 50 per ticket.
As most of the tickets of prominent bus services have already been sold out well in advance ahead of the Eid-ul-Fitr, hundreds of city dwellers thronged the railway station to collect tickets.
Some employees and security staff of the station collect tickets illegally from the counters and sell those to passengers at higher prices, alleged ticket-seekers.
“I bought a Dhaka-Rajshahi ticket for Tk 400, which actually costs Tk 125,” said Bulbul Ahmed. A youth offered him the ticket when he was in a queue.
Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) picked up a railway staff from the station premises around noon on charge of selling tickets in black market, but released him after five hours.
“We released him [staff] on bond that he would not engage himself in such an offense in future,” said Masud Karim, deputy assistant director of Rab-3.
Earlier on Monday night, a mobile court sentenced two persons including a member of Government Railway Police to six months imprisonment each for scalping tickets at the station.
Another ticket-seeker Rashed said he had to pay Tk 200 for a Tk 170 ticket to Bheramara.
“When I asked the ticket seller about the reason for charging me an extra Tk 30, he did not give me any answer but remain strict for Tk 200,” mentioned Rashed.
Talking to The Daily Star, Manager of Kamalapur Railway Station Sitingshu Chakraborty denied any involvement of the railway staff in the black market sale of tickets. He also noted that they were closely monitoring everything to avoid any anomalies in the ticket sales.
The railway authorities started selling advance tickets on Sunday and have already sold out tickets for August 26 to 28. Tickets for August 29 trips will be on sale today and tickets for August 30 will be available tomorrow.
There was no good news either for the bus passengers as they have been spending three to four hours more on the way due to the battered condition of highways.
“Each of our trips now reaches the destination three to four hours later than the scheduled time as the buses cannot run at normal speed,” said Masudur Rahman, a manager of SR Travels bus service.
“Normally, it takes a maximum of six hours to reach Rajshahi starting from capital's Gabtoli. But it took our buses around eight hours to travel the distance yesterday,” said Asaduzzaman, a ticket seller of Shyamoli Paribahan in Kalyanpur.
Fearing sufferings during late rush of passengers just before Eid day, housewife Zakia Islam was leaving the capital with her two children for Chittagong yesterday noon from a bus counter at Fakirapoll.
“We are leaving the city today sensing traffic congestion due to last minute rush of home-bound passengers. My husband will join us on the day before Eid,” she noted.
Ticket-seekers at Sadarghat Launch Terminal could not buy tickets of launch cabins as most of the tickets have been sold out shortly after starting the sale of advance tickets.
“I have been waiting for a ticket of a cabin since morning. But they [launch staff] told me that all the tickets are already sold out. So I have to go home sitting on the deck,” said Monir Hossain of Patuakhali.
He opted to avoid a bus journey fearing tailbacks on highways due to its poor condition.

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