Businesspeople say they want a safe, unpolluted and green city. They say that though the task is not easy, it can be achieved with a coordinated approach.
"Change is possible if the mayor is sincere. The mayor's family should support him and remind him about the duties," said Rubana Huq, President of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA).
Business leaders organised a programme on Tuesday titled 'What Dhaka We Want' at the Raowa Convention Center.
"Our expectation is huge," Rubana, the widow of former Dhaka North Mayor Annisul Huq, told the gathering. "First of all, we want a city that is safe for women," she added.
The BGMEA president said the mayor has to coordinate with as many as 26 other organisations. "Moreover, the office is mostly corrupted, and unprofessional," she commented.
Rubana also placed a host of demands that include reclaiming illegally occupied land and footpaths, resolving the public transportation issue, minimising air pollution and making Dhaka polybag free.
Meanwhile, business leader AK Azad said the Tejgaon truck stand is causing frequent traffic congestion and it needs to be shifted elsewhere immediately.
"City residents and businessmen, we need to step in together," he told the programme.
Industrialist Anisur Rahman Sinha said that Dhaka is suffering from the adverse effects of being an unplanned city. He said proper leadership can put the city back on track.
Former BGMEA director Anwar-Ul-Alam Chowdhury hosted the event.
"The Dhaka mayor needs to do many things as part of his duty. He has to combat extortionists and coordinate with law enforcers," he told The Business Standard.
"We have limitations, and desperately need coordination," he added.
Awami League mayor candidate for Dhaka North Atiqul Islam sought all out support from the business community. He said that he will resume the unfinished work of mayor Annis if he gets re-elected.
"I will digitalise the services in the city in the first six months of taking office," he pledged.
Business leaders including Mohammad Ali Khokon of the Bangladesh Textile Mills Association and Mohammad Hatem of the Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association also addressed the programme.