BD High Court directives to bring discipline back on roads

Dhaka, June 20 – In a verdict, the High Court yesterday issued a set of directives to bring back discipline on the road and reducing road accident across the country.
While delivering a judgment, the HC bench comprising Justice JBM Hassan and Justice Md Khairul Alam also ordered the two bus companies to pay Tk 50 lakh compensation over the death of Rajib Hossain, a Titumir College student who died between two buses in Dhaka last year.
State-run Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation (BRTC) and owners of Sajan Paribahan have to pay Tk 25 lakh each to Rajib’s two brothers within the next two months.
During the deliberation of the verdict, the HC directed the authorities concerned to take steps for dope and eye vision tests of drivers before giving them licenses to run vehicles.
It also directed the authorities concerned of the government to set up CCTV cameras at important places across the country to monitor on whether the bus drivers are driving recklessly or not.
It also directed the government to make Road Transport Act-2018 effective in six months to reduce reckless driving and road accidents in the country.
The HC bench also said that doors of the public buses must remain closed during the move and can be opened only at stoppages for the passengers.
The HC bench also observed that vehicles except ambulances and fire service transports could not blow horn in the areas of schools, hospitals, residential and restricted areas.
The HC bench also said that the government must start franchise system for the public busses and all public vehicles must bring under a company before giving road permit to maintain the discipline on the streets.
The HC bench came up with the directives after disposing of a rule issued by it seeking a compensation sum of Tk 1 crore to the victim’s family.
After yesterday’s order, Rajib’s brothers Mehedi Hassan and Abdullah Bappi expressed satisfaction at the HC verdict.
Talking to reporters, Mehedi said, “We are happy over the HC order as this judgement is very important for all. We don’t want to lose any important guardian like my brother Rajib in the future,” he added.
If the authorities concerned will follow the High Court guideline in driving vehicles on the streets, the road accident might reduce on the road, lawyers concerned opined.
However, Barrister M Moniruzzaman, counsel for the BRTC, told reporters that his client would move an appeal before the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court against the HC verdict as they did not get justice.
The HC bench ordered the BRTC and Sajan Paribahan to pay 25 lakh each to Rajib’s family within the next two months.
Government Titumir College student Rajib lost his hand between two racing buses in Dhaka on April 3 last year. He later succumbed to death from his injuries on April 17.
On May 8 last year, High Court ordered the two bus companies to pay Tk 1 crore to Rajib’s family as compensation. However, both companies filed two separate petitions with the Supreme Court challenging the HC order.
On May 22 last year, the Supreme Court stayed the High Court order and asked it (HC) to form an independent committee to assess the liabilities.
The committee, led by Prof Mizanur Rahman, director of Accident Research Institute at Buet, said reckless driving was the “primary cause of the accident” and blamed Sajan Paribahan for the incident.
Barrister Ruhul Quddus Kazal argued for Rajib’s compensation while Deputy Attorney General Motaher Hossain Sazu represented the state. – Staff Reporter