While big cities around the world are set to befittingly observe World Car-Free Day today and have chalked out elaborate programmes to this end, Dhaka seems to be flippant and oblivious of the necessity of taking measures to encourage people to go car-free on the day.
Last year, Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) Mayor Annisul Huq told an event that at least one road in Banani area would be made off-limits to vehicles by March of this year, but the announcement has not translated into reality as yet.
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“At least one road in Banani will be off-limits to vehicles for a day in a week. We will start with a small road near the Banani market, and people will only be able to walk on the road on that day. No cars or vehicles will be allowed there,” he said, when addressing the event.
Similar systems will be introduced in Mirpur, Mohammadpur and Gulshan areas, he added.
Asked about the city corporation’s plans, DNCC Zonal Executive Officer Hemayet Hossain told the Dhaka Tribune that he had not been informed of such initiatives from the city corporation.
“We did not receive any instruction from our higher authorities to keep roads closed for a day or for a few hours,” the official claimed.
Inquired about their programmes to observe the day, DNCC Secretary Dulal Krisna Saha said they were yet to decide on anything in this regard as the mayor was now abroad for medical purposes.