The Daulatdia-Paturia ghat in Rajbari, known as one of the gateways to 21 districts in the south-west, is now relatively congested with vehicles and passengers.
Since the inauguration of the Padma Bridge on June 25, there has been no traffic and passenger pressure at the busiest Daulatdia Ghat. Where earlier long queues of vehicles could be seen for 4/5 km per day, the ghat area is now in a state of stagnation. Ghat-centric trade has declined due to lack of passenger and vehicle pressure. Small shopkeepers, including hawkers, are frustrated.
On Tuesday from 9 am to noon in the ghat area, it was seen that there is no pressure of passengers and vehicles in the Daulatdia ghat area. Vehicles coming from different parts of the country can come to the ghat area and board the ferry directly. In the past, vehicles had to wait for hours on the highway for ferries. Now there are ferries waiting at the wharf for vehicles.
It is also seen that the busiest Dhaka-Khulna highway is completely empty. In front of the ferry ticket counter, the representatives of the vehicles coming from the south-west are not too busy. There were no long queues of freight cars. Among the vehicles coming to the wharf were long distance transport from Barisal, Khulna or Gopalganj districts. Also, in the past, cattle trucks had to wait for hours at the wharf ahead of Eid-ul-Adha. The truck drivers and workers are happy with this. They thanked Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for easing the pressure on Daulatdia Ghat with the launch of Padma Bridge.
Shariful Islam, a truck driver carrying sacrificial cows from Kumarkhali, said, "We have suffered a lot at this ghat last year." We had to wait for hours on the highway to cross the river. It also killed many animals in the heat. But this year the picture of the ghat is very different. After the opening of the Padma Bridge, there is no traffic pressure at the wharf. I came to the ghat area and got on the ferry after waiting for 10 minutes.
Riazuddin, the driver of SB Super Deluxe from Kushtia, said that suddenly the picture of the ghat has changed completely. Now you don't have to wait for hours after arriving at the pier. It takes as much time to buy a ferry ticket. Going to the wharf, it is seen that the ferries are waiting for the vehicles. However, due to lack of vehicles, it is taking more time to fill the ferry.
Kamal Patwari, a dab seller sitting at the pontoon of Ferry Ghat No. 5, is having a lazy time. As soon as he got up in the pontoon and approached her, he told her to eat dab. When this reporter spoke to him at that time, he said with a dirty face, we don't have business anymore. Since the opening of the Padma Bridge, there has been no pressure on vehicles and passengers at the wharf.
The ghat is completely empty. Even before the inauguration of the Padma Bridge, the ghat area was crowded. If there are people in the ghat, it is better to sell the survivors. If there is no passenger ghat, how will my family survive.
Prafulla Chauhan, Manager, BIWTC Daulatdia Ghat Branch, said, "Our ticket sales have come down to half now. There is no pressure on passengers and vehicles in the ghat area. At present 16 out of 21 ferries operating on this route are operating.
BIWTC Aricha Office DGM Shah. Khaled Newaz said the number of vehicles in the busiest Daulatdia-Paturia has been declining since the Padma Bridge was inaugurated.