Most drivers lack the patience or proper training necessary

How student protests have given Bangladeshis new hope for change

uk canada goose outlet Students block a road Canada Goose sale as they join in a protest on Sunday over the traffic deaths buy canada goose jacket cheap of two high school students in Dhaka, Bangladesh. (Mohammad Ponir Hossain/Reuters) uk canada goose outlet

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canada goose clearance sale Student protests have a long tradition in Bangladesh. Yet the mass demonstrations that have swept across the country for the past week mark an intriguing departure from the past. This time around, the protesters aren’t airing political demands; they’re fighting for a better road and transport system. But the impact of their efforts might Canada Goose Parka be far reaching nonetheless, since their selfless activism is giving new canadian goose jacket hope to the country’s people. canada goose clearance sale

canada goose coats on sale The proximate cause of the protests was the death of two high school students who were killed after getting trapped between two city buses whose drivers were concentrating on competing for passengers. The demonstrators, who overwhelmingly Canada Goose Outlet consist of middle and high school students, canada goose coats want to be able to commute to school without putting their lives at risk. canada goose coats on sale

canada goose factory sale Their demands are reasonable. Bangladeshi traffic and public transportation are a case study in mismanagement. Most drivers lack the patience or proper training necessary for safe driving. They flout traffic signals in the metropolitan areas, making stops almost anywhere along their route. On the highways, they treat speed limits and traffic lanes as optional rather than binding. canada goose factory sale

buy canada goose jacket cheap A recent survey finds that 87 percent of buses and minibuses break traffic rules. canada goose Worse, traffic laws in Bangladesh are either inadequate or nonexistent, according to a study by the World Health Organization. Vehicles that zip along the roads are often unfit. canada goose deals If they don’t cause accidents, canada goose coats on sale their faulty engines belch thick black smoke, exacerbating canada goose clearance sale the already unhealthy air qualityin dense urban areas such as Dhaka. buy canada goose jacket cheap

cheap Canada Goose It should buy canada goose jacket come as little surprise that cheap Canada Goose the rate of death canada goose clearance from road accidents is high. Anisul Haque, an editor and novelist, likened it to a form of genocide. He was not exaggerating. A report from earlier this year suggests that more than 2,400 Bangladeshis have died in the first six months alone. While there is a conspicuous paucity of reliable measures of economic loss due to road accidents in Bangladesh, the World Health Organization estimates that road accidents eat up roughly 5 percent of gross domestic product in low and medium income countries. If the personal, psychological and social impacts of Canada Goose Jackets these accidents are accounted for, the figure would be even greater for Bangladesh. cheap Canada Goose

canada goose uk shop It is no overstatement to say that public transportation in Bangladesh is broken. Decades of malpractice in the transport sector have given rise to a self help system. In the absence of appropriate legal instruments, both passengers and transport owners depend on unconventional methods to get the best deal. Those accused of hit and run accidents offer to pay a negotiated sum only if they’re caught by a mob. This unhealthy culture cannot be a substitute for a minimally functional transport system. canada goose uk shop

Canada Goose Outlet Bangladeshis are understandably fed up. They Canada Goose online don’t want empty promises from policymakers; they want to see tangible changes. So when the teens marching in the streets of Dhaka assumed the role of impromptu traffic police, they garnered public support immediately. Prodded by the protests, the cabinet proposed new traffic laws while the police decided to observe a countrywide traffic week to ensure that all vehicles have proper documentation and fitness. Canada Goose Outlet

canada goose coats As welcome as all this is, the government should do more to assuage the public’s concerns. The cabinet member who controls a traffic labor union, in a personal capacity separate cheap canada goose from his ministerial portfolio, should also make sure that his involvement in labor bargaining doesn’t pose any conflict of interest. canada goose coats

Canada Goose Coats On Sale Last but not least, the government should have tackled the demonstrations with utmost caution and sensitivity. Initially peaceful, canada goose black friday sale the student protests quickly degenerated into chaos as some government sympathizers responded with violence. Reporters and photojournalists have been brutally beaten. There are reports that the youth wings of the ruling Awami League party have attacked the protesters. ambassador has come under attack by unidentified miscreants. Canada Goose Coats On Sale

canada goose The student demonstration is particularly ill timed for Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina as Bangladeshis go to the polls in a few months. With the opposition in disarray, another election victory is all but certain for her party. Yet she’s still keen to win solid public support, which now hinges, to an extent, on how her administration deals with the students. canada goose

buy canada goose jacket So far Hasina is walking a fine line. She has rejected the idea of blocking Facebook, as floated by at least one member of the government, perhaps assuming that it would further alienate the youths. Although the Internet has been slowed down, people still have access. The best strategy for Hasina and her cabinet would be to express solidarity with the students and demonstrate concrete actions. This would not be a sign of weakness. On the contrary, the government should take this opportunity to hold itself accountable to the people, thus gaining their support. buy canada goose jacket

canada goose clearance I experienced a serious accident while in college. A speeding car ran a red light and hit me. I underwent two complicated surgeries. While I lead a normal life today, the trauma still haunts me. I am not alone. There are hundreds of thousands like me. For canada goose store many, accidents destroy the entire family. The student protests are thus giving victims of this dysfunctional system as well as the public in general hope for reform. They should not be allowed to fail canada goose clearance.

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