The High Court on Tuesday asked the Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA) to take steps for setting ‘flat looking glass’ or ‘side-view mirrors’ in both the outer sides of the CNG-run auto-rickshaws as per law.
It has also asked the BRTA to publish notifications in television and newspapers in this regard within two months. And in that notification, the BRTA authorities have been asked to give one-month time for owners of the auto-rickshaws to install looking glasses.
The High Court bench of Justice J B M Hassan and Justice Razik-Al-Jalil passed the order after hearing a writ petition filed in this regard.
Lawyer Tanveer Ahmed appeared in the court hearing in support of the writ petition, while lawyer Muhammad Rafiul Islam represented the BRTA.
Mr Rafiul Islam later said, “The court asked the BRTA to publish the notification regarding setting looking glass in outer sides of the CNG auto rickshaws within two months after receiving the copy of the HC order. The court also ordered to set looking glass in the back side of the auto-rickshaws, but this direction is not mandatory.”
Lawyer Tanveer Ahmed said, “The court fixed February 28 in 2023 as the next hearing date and asked BRTA to submit a report after complying with the order by this time.”
According to Section 117 of the Motor Vehicle Rules, 1940 and Section 2(26) of the Motor Vehicle Act, 2018 there is a provision to install side view mirrors or looking glass in front of the driver on both outer sides of CNG-powered auto rickshaws.
However, the fact is, almost cent per cent of CNG auto-rickshaws have side view mirrors or looking glass on the inner side due to various excuses like theft, damage and smooth running.
Citing the data on road accidents in the capital Supreme Court lawyer Tanveer Ahmed on July 26, 2018, filed a public interest litigation with the High Court seeking instructions for the formation of an expert committee on vehicle fitness survey.
Following the writ petition, the HC formed a 15-member expert committee for internal and external fitness survey of public transports. It also issued a rule regarding the issue and sought opinions over the side view mirror of the auto rickshaws.
Complying with the HC order Dr Muhammad Ashiqur Rahman, chairman of the Mechanical Engineering Department of the Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology (BUET), formed a two-member team for giving opinions on the issue. Later Professors Dr Md Ashraful Islam and Dr Sumon Saha of the department submitted a report on November 17 this year.