JHENIDAH, Aug 28: Most of the local markets (Haats) in the district are suffering hugely from space crisis as the places have been made congested with permanent establishments mounting suffering to the haat users.
Though the government receives millions of money from the call of the haats, the public places here are not extended, people concerned complained.
Most of the haat spaces are occupied with concrete shops where the owners run various types of business in bazars.
As a result haats sitting on highways mount suffering to all kinds of haat users including buyers, sellers and commuters.
Haats at Dakbangla Bazaar, Barobazar, Tetultala, Hatgopalpur Bazar, Halidhani in Jhenidah Sadar, Garaganj and Sheikhpara under Shailkupa upazila and Khalishupur under Kotchandpur upazila, to name only some of them, sit on the highways to trouble everybody concerned.
Trucks and pickups are loaded on highways with produces to go to different cities including the capital city.
Ganna animal haat has been given to the leaseholder for Tk 7.6 million in 2018. But there is not enough space there to accommodate the cattle heads brought there. If there was enough space, the haat would flourish more, sources said.
Md. Ashraful Alam, general secretary of district unit of Bangladesh Awami League told this correspondent, "The government is not giving importance to the haats in Jhenidah. The government should provide enough space to the haats so that more revenue can be earned."
Bazar Gopalpur haat had turned to be a promising place for trading the crops grown in the surrounding places. However, the wholesale buyers show reluctance attending the haat as there is an acute scarcity of space, Ashraful Alam added.
A total of 300-400 bicycle riders, 15-20 engine-run vans, 25-30 locally assembled three wheelers, pick up vans and trucks come to Gopalpur haat carrying produces -- green chilly, among others, which is cultivated amply in the area.
Parking place is not available here, leading to serious discomfort to both the farmers and buyers.
Md. Sajjad Hossain Topon at Dakbangla Bazar said that sitting haat on the highway is a very bad practice. We cannot move freely on haat days twice a week.
While contacted, Jhenidah Sadar UNO Shammi Islam said, "We have started determining peripheries of various haats and bazars throughout the upazila. We will look into whether the shops at haats have been made legally or not. Either we will give the owners permanent allotment or demolish the establishments after getting instruction from the district administration."
Shammi Islam also said, "5.0 per cent revenue money is preserved for haat development. We have done development work in four haats in the upazila. The work included heightening level of haat sites with earth and making two latrines and one tube-well in each haat."
Deputy Commissioner of Jhenidah Saroj Kumar Nath said, "We are raising public awareness discouraging people's bad practice in selling their produces on highways on haat days. We will consider extension of areas of Bazar Gopalpur general haat and Ganna cattle haat as per our capacity."
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