A writ petition challenging the legality of raising bus fare by 60 per cent for the period of coronavirus pandemic was filed with the High Court on Monday.
Barrister Mohammad Humaun Kabir, a Supreme Court lawyer, filed the petition on behalf of a rights organisation, Law and Life Foundation, saying that the decision of increasing the bus fare is a violation of fundamental rights of the people described in the Constitution of the Republic.
In the petition, the lawyer prayed to the High Court to issue a rule asking the respondents to explain as to why the notification issued by the Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA) about increasing the fare unreasonably should not be declared illegal.
Secretary of the Ministry of Transport, principal secretary to the prime minister and chairman of BRTA have been made respondents.
He also prayed for staying the operation of the notification until disposal of the case in order to uphold the prevailing public interest during this pandemic period.
The lawyer said that the High Court might hear the petition today (Tuesday).
The fare hike was announced through a gazette notification issued by the Ministry of Road Transport and Bridges on Sunday, in response to a demand by the transport owners as they will have to keep 50 per cent seats vacant to prevent spread of the virus.
The increased fare will be applicable for both city and long-distance routes. The revised fare will be effective from June 01 and will remain applicable only for the period of Covid-19 pandemic, the notification also read.