Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) Mayor Barrister Sheikh Fazle Noor Taposh is determined to turn the capital into a liveable, beautiful, dynamic, well-governed and modern city.
Taposh expressed his conviction to recover footpaths from grabbers, rehabilitate hawkers, and manage gridlocks in the city permanently and bring reality-based solutions to all issues.
The mayor disclosed his mega plans in an interview with UNB over Zoom.
Asked about recovering footpaths for pedestrians, the mayor said he is going to make an information bank of all hawkers and rehabilitate them to bring a permanent solution to the footpath problem.
Terming footpath recovery a big deal, Taposh said: "Whatever we want to do now is doing for a long term."
"We're not doing this like pushing hawkers from one side and they'll sit again when we go away from the spot," he said, adding that he was not into public stunts.
"Whatever we do will be reality-based, permanent and for long term," he added.
Rehabilitation of hawkers
Mayor Taposh said they would conduct a survey and make an information bank with detailed information on hawkers.
"Later, hawkers will get chances to apply and place their demands, and according to their appeals, we'll provide and rehabilitate them as much as possible," Taposh said.
Taposh said they are going to be strict and no hawker will be allowed to sit anywhere but rehabilitate them.
However, if anyone thinks that he will get a shop and be rehabilitated automatically after going to Dhaka, this will not happen, said the Mayor.
Recovery after rehabilitation
The DSCC Mayor said, "We'll start footpath recovery drives only when the hawkers' rehabilitation programme is completed."
Every step will be planned one, he said. "We won't go for any drive without plans."
Frequently, rehabilitation issues were discussed but not implemented, said Taposh adding that this time it will happen.
Roads for walking, specific vehicles
Asked about mayhem in city roads, the DSCC Mayor said specific plans will be implemented to come out of this issue.
It requires a mega plan for roads, said the Mayor adding that all vehicles will not be allowed to use the same roads.
Mass transports will move only where it is needed, some roads will be there for walking only some for motor and low speed vehicles, while some roads will be dedicated only to horse carts as people can enjoy, he added.
The DSCC Mayor told UNB that Dhaka will be well decorated, and it will be done collectively, adding that a complete traffic management should be implemented.
"Coordination is needed to implement all these things," he said, noting that it is necessary to decide who will coordinate everything and implement this with responsibility.
Mayor Annisul's initiatives
Taposh said former DNCC Mayor Annisur Huq took some initiatives for reducing gridlocks in the city.
"We'll soon take steps according to the plans he took," he added.
Mayor Annisul formed a committee- Dhaka Transport Coordination Authority (DTCA) – under the Local Government and Rural Development Ministry.
Taposh said he recently came to know that the DSCC Mayor has been made the chief of that committee but activities are yet to start because of Covid-19 pandemic.
He noted that mass transports have not started. "We'll sit with all stakeholders," he said.
"I'm confident as I'm accountable to people, and I want to realise what the people want. I hope to start activities soon with a mega plan," he said.