After a long time, dope tests for professional drivers are being launched simultaneously across the country this month. This test can be used to find out which driver is addicted to drugs. For this they have to pay 900 rupees each. The BRTA says drivers of professions must take dope tests before obtaining a license, as well as instantaneous test centers will be set up at bus terminals. Although drivers welcome the process, they are reluctant to pay for the test. Experts say that if dope tests are implemented, incidents like sexual harassment, including accidents, will be reduced on the roads.
The length of roads in the country, infrastructure development and registered vehicles have multiplied in the last three decades. However, there are no accidents or harassment on the road compared to that.
According to statistics, more than 6,000 people were killed in road accidents in 2021, which is 16 percent more than last year. According to non-governmental organizations, drug addiction is responsible for 30 percent of the accidents. On the other hand, the incidence of sexual harassment on the bus has also increased as compared to the last few years where only 34 women have been raped. Most of the drivers and associates are responsible for these incidents
In such a reality, Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA) will start dope testing of drivers across the country this month to find out whether the drivers are addicted to drugs. For this, you have to take a dope test to get a driver’s license. The license will be handed over to the drivers only after passing the test.
However, to get this license, professional drivers have to pay 900 rupees for the test. Although the drivers welcomed the initiative, there is reluctance to give free test.
In this regard, a driver said, there are many people who drive after consuming alcohol and cannabis.
Another driver said that 20% out of 100 are addicted to drugs. But for that 20%, 80% is notorious.
In the meantime, BRTA has completed all kinds of activities with the Department of Health. Authorities must give dope tests to all drivers when renewing new licenses.
BRTA Chairman Noor Mohammad Majumder said that from now on, it would be mandatory to attach dope test results in the license application form. From now on, no one will get a driving license without a dot test.
Experts say that this will reduce the number of accidents and deaths on the road. However, BRTA needs to be monitored to bring transparency in dope tests.
In this regard, Saifun Newaz, Assistant Professor, Accident Institute, Bangladesh University of Engineering, said that reckless driving can be controlled only by dope testing. It is necessary to bring transparency in the test as well as regular monitoring. At the same time the source of drugs must be controlled.
According to the BRTA, the number of registered transports in the country is about 4.5 million and there are 2.6 million drivers.