First day of siege: Long distance bus not leaving Gabtali
No long-distance buses were seen leaving the capital’s Gabtali bus terminal on the first day of the three-day blockade called by the BNP.It has been seen on the ground that most of the bus counters at Gabtali Bus Terminal are open. But the number of passengers is very less.
Liton Khan, an employee of Rafi Traders Limited, the terminal’s revenue collection company, told The Daily Star, ‘The car was supposed to leave early in the morning. But, no revenue has been collected as no long-distance vehicle has left yet.’
Shahriar Shubo, ticket master of Hanif Enterprises, told Daily Star, ‘As many as 20 cars were supposed to leave on several routes. But, due to insufficient number of passengers, no vehicle was released.’
He also said, ‘I sold two-four tickets. Later I returned the money to them. It is not possible without a long-distance car with such a small number of passengers.’
‘We are not thinking about a blockade. Thinking about passengers. We will leave the vehicle if we get sufficient number of passengers,’ he added.The same information was obtained from other transport service companies including Shyamoli Paribahan.
Rakibul Islam, a passenger waiting for a car at Gabtali, told Daily Star, ‘I have been waiting here since 7 am to go to Jhenaidah. There are buses, but no passengers. It has been said from the counter that the bus will be released if sufficient number of passengers are found.
Meanwhile, the leaders and activists of anti-blockade Awami League and its affiliated organizations were seen sitting at the main gate of Gabtali bus terminal.
In this context, a public transport worker told the Daily Star, ‘The anti-blockade seems to be the blockers. A few passengers used to come, it seems that no one is coming inside the terminal for fear of seeing them (anti-blockade).