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Demand to Create Safe and Comfortable Walking Environment

Considering congestion, health, environment, fuel consumption and infrastructure, walking is the most convenient mode of transport. More than 60 lakhs trips are by walking in Dhaka. But necessary walking infrastructure like footpath, level crossing are absent in Dhaka. Existing footpaths lack maintenance. As a result, pedestrian specially women, children and persons with disabilities face a lot of problems.  On 10 May 2016, a rally was conducted from Rangs Anam Plaza to Abahani Playground to observe walking condition and it was found out that one-third of the road is not in a good condition. Save the Environment Movement (POBA), Naripokkho, BARSIK, BCHRD, Poriborton Chai, Poribesh Unnayan Society, Dhaka International University,Nagorik Odhikar Shongrokkhon Forum (NASOF), Prottyasha and Work for a Better Bangladesh trust jointly organized the rally. After the rally a demonstration was organized in front of Abahani Playground and speakers came up with various recommendations to develop the walking condition.  

In the walking rally it has been observe that the footpaths from Rangs Anam Plaza to Abahani Playground has not been maintained properly. Though there are ramps in the footpaths but those are not appropriate for the persons with disabilities to use. And also there is no level crossing for them. Moreover footpaths are occupied with various obstacles like-garbage, construction goods etc.

Speakers said that, a survey among 6 areas of Dhaka says that, footpath condition is bad in 82% area and 44% area doesn’t have any footpath. And the existing footpaths are not in a good walking condition. So it is important to make the footpaths obstacle free and make walkable.

The program was moderated by Ziaur Rahman, Senior Project Officer, Work for a Better Bangladesh Trust. The speakers of the program were Maruf Rahman, Program Manager, Work for a Better Bangladesh Trust; Maksuda Begum, Assistant Manager, Naripakkha; Helal Ahmed, General Secretary, Protyasha; MD. Mohiuddin , research Assistant, Dhaka International University and Hafizur Rahman Moyna, Chairman, NASOF. Besides, Gaous Pearee, Director, Work for a Better Bangladesh Trust; Naznin Jabir, Deputy Program Manager, Work for a Better Bangladesh Trust; Atiq Morshed, Program Co-coordinator, POBA; Borhan Uddin Ahmed, Chairman, Poribesh Unnayan Society; Pavel Partha, Coordinator, Barsik and many more were also present in the program.