Success will come in Kushtia’s transportation sector once the Padma Dream Bridge is inaugurated. Owners and workers of Kushtia’s bus and cargo truck service companies expect it. The current total trade of Tk 100 crore in the district will amount to Tk 300 crore.
Mazampur Gate is the busiest area of the district town. More than 200 passenger buses from 25 coach service companies and 300 cargo trucks from 20 companies travel daily from here on the Dhaka-Chittagong route. Due to the distance, traffic jams and bad roads, almost half of the dividend amount has to be calculated every year in these sectors.
Driver Rezaul Islam was waiting for passengers outside the counter at Majampur Gate bus station bound for Dhaka SB Coach Service Company. The house is in Hatch Haripur across the Garai River. He will depart for Dhaka with a 12-hour trip. In response to the question of whether there would be any benefit if Padma Bridge is open, he said, Hey bro, going to Dhaka via Yamuna Bridge is the same as going to Delhi. Only 277 thousand. M. Road travel time should be only 4:30-5 hours. Now it takes 8-10 hours. Then when I pass through Kushtia, I have to get into traffic jams in such places, I’m afraid of what will happen to the empty field. There are no shops, passengers are bustling with children and teenagers. If the Padma Bridge is open, it will take 1 hour more from Kushtia, and the distance will also increase, but then you can reach Dhaka-Chittagong at least 2 hours earlier without any traffic jams. About the rent, he said now AC rent is 800 taka then it will be 100 taka more and chair coaches will take 6.50 taka instead of 550 takas in Dhaka. Dhaka-Chittagong can be reached very comfortably and in less time.
Rezaul Karim, the owner of the Shyamoli Paribahan counter and leader of the minibus-bus owner’s group, which goes directly to the Kushtia-Cox bazaar, said that we are waiting for Padma Setu to open. Now our company vehicles go to Cox’s Bazar, Dhaka via the Daulatdia ferry or Yamuna bridge which takes both time and pain. Dhaka and Cox’s Bazar can be reached in a very short time if the Padma Bridge is open. Vehicle demurrage will also be less and passengers will feel comfortable. He said, now only our company (Shyamoli Paribahan) travels from Kushtia to Chattogram, Cox’s Bazar, I think when Padma Bridge is opened, many more companies will increase the number of coach services going to Dhaka-Chittagong-Cox’s Bazaar, Sylhet.
Abdur Razzak, president of the Kushtia Motor Workers Union, said we will survive if the Padma Bridge is opened. He said Padma Setu is a blessing to our Kushtia people. Where now I go to Dhaka in 10 hours then I go to Dhaka in just 6-7 hours. Not only that, but the financial savings will also be huge. We Kushtia Autoworkers believe that henceforth we will go to Dhaka-Sylhet-Chittagong via Padma Bridge and not via the Yamuna. By doing this, we will get rid of long-term traffic jams and various problems on the road. In addition, if the Padma Bridge is opened, I believe that the transport sector of Kushtia will also improve more economically than now.
Secretary General of Kushtia Bus-Minibus Owners Association Salim Hossain said Padma Bridge will play an important role in Kushtia’s economy. Currently, I have four buses on the Khulna route. For Padma Bridge, I am preparing 6 new coach services, including 2 modern sleeper coach services named Air Express and 4 normal AC buses. I hope to get a good answer. He said that our MP Mahbubul Alam Hanif wanted to help modernize our bus depot with the construction of a multi-story building. When Padma Bridge is opened, we will encourage general owners to start new services on this road and more new businesses to start cars on Dhaka-Chittagong, Comilla, and Cox’s Bazar roads. He also said there will be a new boost in the economy. About 300 freight trucks ply from Kushtia to Dhaka-Sylhet-Chattagram.
Speaking to Sihab Uddin, the owner of Imran Enterprises, a transport businessman, he said rice, bananas, betel leaves, sand, vegetables, and other goods are usually sent to Dhaka, Sylhet, Chittagong, the capital of the country. A business of Rs 100 crore is made annually from these products. After the Padma Bridge is completed, many other commodities including vegetables, betel nuts, and rice will flow from Kushtia to Chittagong, and truck trips will also increase. He said that now a truck with bananas and bananas in Chittagong costs 15,000 to 20,000 taka because the transport of passengers by bus on the road is more important.
On ferries, bridges are more important for passenger transport, and cargo trucks are always in series, so if the bus takes one day, the truck takes two days to reach Kushtia with goods. Therefore, the cost is all the higher as the time is longer. The price per trip is therefore also higher. Now, if there is the Padma Bridge, you can easily get to any district in the country in a short time, the traffic congestion will be reduced, and the fare will also be reduced. The product offering will also increase. As a result, the annual trade of Tk 100 crore can be expected to increase to Tk 300 crore.