More than half of the 56,349 traffic rules violation cases filed in Dhaka Metropolitan Area were against riders of two wheelers, according to police data collected during the seven days of Traffic Week.
Failure to stop at red lights, produce valid documents and driving licences, not wearing helmets, and travelling against traffic were the top offences committed by motorcyclists.
Penalised bus drivers mostly obstructed traffic, drove with invalid licences and route permits, said traffic police officials.
While bikers racked up the highest number of cases, driving licence related cases were second and driving against traffic was third, said SM Murad Ali, deputy commissioner of (Traffic South Division) of Dhaka Metropolitan Police.
Nationwide, offenders were fined around Tk 4.5 crore and Tk 3 crore of it was in Dhaka. Just under 1.3 lakh cases had been filed across the country.
According DMP statistics, 5,572 vehicles were impounded in the last seven days.
The DMP as well as Police Headquarters have extended the Traffic Week, which was to end yesterday, by three more days.
Police officials said they would ease off their drives after Tuesday when the Eid home rush is expected to start and pick it up again after Eid.
The Traffic Week was launched on August 5 amid an unprecedented movement for road safety by students following deaths of two collegegoers under a bus on Airport Road.
Rules violations by drivers, vehicle owners and pedestrians contribute to accidents that claim several thousand lives every year.
Meanwhile, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan in Comilla told reporters, “Kidney diseases or cancer is no longer the main killer. The main killer is road accident.”
The minister came up with the comment after a bus driven by its helper rear-ended his car in College Gate area in Dhaka around 9:00pm on Friday. The bus had overtaken the police vehicle escorting the minister’s car.
Bus driver Ibrahim Khalil Emon and his assistance Manik were arrested in a case filed by Traffic Inspector Ekhlasur Rahman with Sher-e-Bangla Nagar Police Station.
Police officials claimed that Emon told them that he was exhausted after driving the bus the entire day and handed the steering over to Manik.
90 PERCENT VIOLATE RULES
Enforcement of traffic rules is very tough when 90 percent of the people in the country violate traffic rules, claimed DMP Commissioner Asaduzzaman Mia at a press briefing. He said 92 percent people in other countries abide by traffic rules.
Despite this, over 4,000 traffic police personnel were on the ground working to bring discipline on roads, he said.
Asaduzzaman claimed that the Traffic Week brought positive changes and its extension would help make the improvements sustainable.
“Innocent children have stirred our conscience. We have taken their message in our hearts. We have decided to take action against all traffic rules violators … ,” he said.
The commissioner urged owners to check driving licences of drivers before hiring them, employ them on monthly salary basis, and ensure valid documents of vehicles before they hit the road.
Drivers were requested not to drive while smoking or talking over the phone. Pedestrians were requested to use footbridges.
“All have to play responsible roles,” Asaduzzaman said.
Responding to a query, he said they would not be lenient on anyone or any vehicle that has no valid documents. It is not the police’s concern whether vehicles ply on the street or not.
In reply to another query, the commissioner said a vested quarter tried to create anarchy, committed acts of sabotage, and circulated rumours using old photographs.
They have been identified. Some of them have been arrested while police are trying to arrest the others, he said.
Rab yesterday seized six buses of Jabal-e-Noor Paribahan in different areas of the city for not having valid documents. The street race between two buses of Jabal-e-Noor Paribahan had caused the deaths of the college students on July 29.