Atiqul Islam, the mayor of Dhaka North City Corporation, feels relocating the bus terminals, truck stand and the wholesale kitchen market holds the key to ending the capital city’s traffic nightmare.
Speaking in bdnews24.com’s ‘Inside Out’ on Sunday, the mayor said devotion to serving the people and transparency are the basics of his strategy in overcoming the challenges facing the city. Videos of the programme are available on bdnews24.com’s Facebook page and YouTube channel, along with the website.
Atiqul also talked about the mosquito menace, which has caused the worst outbreak of deadly dengue fever, and waterlogging problem.
To him, these are not problems but challenges that he took.
He said launching the Shobar Dhaka app for citizens to get services from the city corporation helped people file complaints about particular issues, such as a missing manhole cover.
And it created the option to ensure transparency by holding accountable those who are responsible for looking after these issues, according to the mayor.
Atiqul said the inter-district bus terminals in Mohakhali and Gabtoli, along with the truck stand in Tejgaon and the wholesale kitchen market in Karwan Bazar are the main obstacles to ensuring comfort for the residents of the city.
Plans are already there to relocate them while taking forward ongoing initiatives, such as franchise-based bus services, will ease the residents’ suffering further, according to him.
Atiqul said Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has approved a plan to set up a multi-storeyed truck stand on a five-acre piece of land in Tejgaon so that truckers do not need to park on the streets of the industrial area.
He thanked Hasina for the implementation of the Dhaka Metro Rail and the Dhaka Elevated Expressway projects.
If the inter-district bus terminal of Mohakhali can be relocated to one end of the metro rail route at Diabari in Uttara, people from outside the capital will be able to take the trains to their destinations easily and return home after their work in the city is finished, Atiqul said.
And the long-route buses will not need to enter the city, which will free up the streets and make commuting more comfortable, he explained.
The authorities are trying to acquire land for the terminal in Diabari, he said.
Atiqul has plans to relocate Gabtoli bus terminal to Savar’s Hemayetpur, where a second metro rail route will be built.
Karwan Bazar wholesale kitchen market will be relocated to Gabtoli and Jatrapari, he said.
To control mosquitos, he reiterated, awareness among the people about steps to ensure cleanliness and prevent the breeding of the mosquitos is key to control dengue cases.