'Resume Nagarbari-Paturia ferry service'
Transport owners and truckers in northern districts have demanded resumption of ferry service on Nagarbari-Paturia route on the Jamuna, closed for over 10 months due to shortage of ferry boats.
After repeated demands from transport owners and suggestions from Pabna district administration, BIWTA authorities last week visited Nagarbari terminal and talked to transport owners associations in Pabna.
“We told them that one Ro-Ro ferry could be put into service on the route but they demanded at least two, which can not be arranged now due to shortage of ferry boats”, BIWTA deputy general manager Abdul Matin told this correspondent when contacted over phone.
“There are 9 Ro-Ro ferries in Aricha. One of them is in dockyard for repair and eight others are in operation on Aricha-Daulutdia route.
“The ferry service (in Paturia-Nagarbari route) can not be resumed only due to shortage of vessels. We have informed the higher authorities about the matter,” Matin said.
Transport owners said resumption of the ferry service will save time and fuel for trucks from Pabna and northern districts to the capital and reduce transportation cost of goods.
“Over 100 kilometers will be saved in the journey from Pabna to Dhaka, which will reduce about 40 litres of fuel if ferry service is resumed”, said Md. Abul Hossain Khan Mohan, president of truck owners association in northern districts.
This will also reduce pressure on the Jamuna Bridge, he said.
Around 12 ferries were in service on the route earlier which carried several hundred trucks.
The service was suspended in July last year and resumed in December for two-three days due to the shortage of ferries and poor navigability of Jamuna. Responding to demand of transport owners, BIWTA introduced K-type ferry (small Ferry) 'Kosturi' on May 1 but closed after a day.
Pabna district administration send several letters to BIWTA higher authorities for resuming of the ferry service, sources said.