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“Better transportation can make Dhaka livable”
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“Better transportation can make Dhaka livable”

Abdullah al Hasan photoDhaka makes the list of unlivable cities, but Abdullah Al Hasan, 24, a Commonwealth Correspondent from Dhaka in Bangladesh, argues that better transportation could move the city into a better rating.

Every year, when the rankings of unlivable cities of the world are released, Bangladeshi people sadly look for Dhaka’s name on the list.

Yes, that’s what happens. And Dhaka has always been an unlivable city according to those rankings. The question is, do Bangladeshi people really think that Dhaka is unlivable? Do Dhaka people even think this way? What is the basis of those rankings? And if we concede that Dhaka is really unlivable, still we might want to ask ourselves – being the capital of Bangladesh, why does Dhaka fail to qualify as a livable city?

The answer is conjecturable. The huge popluation living in Dhaka is the major cause for Dhaka being considered unlivable. If a lot of people together make a place populous, it is not feasible to control them properly. There will be accommodation, sanitary and food problems everywhere. Bangladesh, being a poor country, cannot afford to solve each of those problems immediately. Then where will we go?

Our government has already taken some steps to lessen the increasing growth of our population, but still Dhaka is not benefitting. Dhaka is not only the capital of Bangladesh, but also the main business and economic center of the country. People across the country come here to have a better life or higher education. Other parts of the country do not provide the same facilities as Dhaka.

Some suggest evacuating all the major industries and business markets from Dhaka to other places, some suggest the government develop other cities so that people don’t come to Dhaka in the first place. These are great solutions, but are they really possible? No way! You can imagine the hassle if you want to do this. Dhaka is an unplanned city. You cannot just go ahead and move everything here and there to solve its current problems. Rather, it will create a lot more problems.

We have to think of something that is easy to implement and that people would find really salutary. And here comes the transportation issue!

Transportation from Dhaka to other parts of the country has never been noteworthy. Most of the roads are narrow. Most of the vehicles used for transportation are obsolete. There’s always traffic jam. People suffer a lot, and can never make it to Dhaka on time from different places.

People have jobs in Dhaka, they have to attend offices everyday, and also they come here for business, education and health purposes. People need to stay in Dhaka, and all this makes Dhaka expensive day by day. One solution for everything – good transportation! If there’s a good transportation and communication system through which people can come to Dhaka easily, they might not need to stay in Dhaka for a long period of time.

In western countries, people can travel from here to there within a couple of minutes. If the distance between two places is 250 kilometres, it does not scare them. But here in Bangladesh, 250 km is a long distance. We have to give up at least two days to cover that distance.

A good transportation system will not only help our general public, but also it will help students. There are people who cannot afford the living cost of Dhaka for their children, and thus cannot send them to school. Other students who are struggling to survive in Dhaka will also find improved communication and transportation helpful in every possible way.

But we have to keep in mind that this transportation system must be affordable for everyone, because we have a low living standard. This is where government can take next steps. Government can repair the roads and improve the quality of the vehicles. New rules and regulations can be set to monitor the transportation system. They can also remove all the backdated vehicles and increase the budget for our internal communication system.

It will be beneficial for our environment, too. The Ministry of Road Transport and Bridges and Ministry of Railways should work simultaneously. There is a huge opportunity to develop the railway sector specifically. It can provide cheap and faster communication. Besides, rail is a less risky travel that people would chose over other options.

If our government can manage it somehow, these options will solve most of the problems facing Dhaka. And if people start living outside Dhaka, it will be possible to control and beautify Dhaka again. We don’t want Dhaka to be on the list of unlivable cities anymore. We dream of a better Dhaka for our future generation. We want a green Dhaka.

photo credit: DSCN6072 via photopin (license)

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About me:

Hi I’m from Bangladesh, the green land. Currently I’m studying marketing at North South University, Dhaka. I love to explore human minds. Writing is my favourite pastime. I always try to do research about people, politics, metaphysics, English and marketing.

I’m just an ordinary guy with some extra-ordinary dreams to be fulfilled. I believe a moment staying with family is just worth living. Friends are my oxygen.

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Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth Youth Programme. Articles are published in a spirit of dialogue, respect and understanding. If you disagree, why not submit a response?

To learn more about becoming a Commonwealth Correspondent please visit: http://www.yourcommonwealth.org/submit-articles/commonwealthcorrespondents/

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