A bill titled "Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation Bill, 2020" was passed in the parliament today aiming to bring transparency, accountability and dynamism in the public transport sector.
Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader piloted the bill in the House. Later, the bill was passed by voice votes while Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury, who was in the chair, moved it for voting.
Placing the bill, the minister said proposed law will replace the existing Road Transport Corporation Ordinance, 1961 and the law will ensure a modern and progressive public road transport system.
Opposing the lawmakers proposal for further scrutiny of the bill, Quader clarified that opinion from all the concerned stakeholders has already been taken into consideration during the securitization of the bill.
Earlier, there was no direct and indirect representation of the concerned ministry and the corporation officials in the board of directors under the existing law, according to the proposed bill.
In the new law, a provision has been incorporated among the functions of the Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation (BRTC) which will render transport services during emergency situations like hartal (strike), blockade, transport strike, emergency condition, national disaster, Biswa Ijtema, freedom fighters' rally and in the case of emergency need of the state.
According to the proposed law, the government will own 51 percent shares of the corporation while the rest 49 percent will be offloaded for the public.
The proposed law has a provision to update an ordinance promulgated in 1961, keeping it to offload the shares of BRTC in the capital market.
The authorized capital of the BRTC will be Taka 1,000 crore which will be divided into 100 crore general shares with Taka 10 base price.
There will be a 23-member board of directors of the corporation instead of the existing 11-member one.
Jatiya Party lawmaker Fakhrul Imam, Kazi Feroz Rashid, Rustam Ali Farazi and BNP lawmaker Harunur Rashid, Rumin Farhana discussed on the bill.
"BRTC is continuously providing its service by incorporating a number of 2,058 new buses and trucks during the regime led by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina," the minister told the parliament adding that the BRTC is operating its service at 428 internal routes and five international routes.