City’s empty roads wish you a happy Eid


Many Pardesis returned to their hometowns to celebrate Eid with their dear ones on Wednesday evening. The city witnessed a mass exodus of more than three million people ahead of the long weekend.
As the government and other autonomous and public sector corporations announced Eid holidays from August 8 to 10 (Thursday to Saturday), numerous people residing in the city owing either to jobs, businesses or studies started leaving for their home towns since Tuesday evening but the mass exodus reached its peak on Wednesday. Keeping in mind the probable transport shortage situation, many individuals returned to their families a day prior to the holidays.
All the city exit points including Shahdara, Multan Road, Ferozpur Road, Saggian PuI and Shera Kot and bus and rail terminals including the Badami Bagh general bus stand, the Sikandria Colony bus terminal, the Yatim Khana terminal and the Lahore Railway station remained packed with passengers till late night. A massive shortage of buses, coaches and vans was observed.
Besides tall District governmental claims, people were complaining of being charged extra by the transporters. Keeping in mind the mass exodus, transporters, ironically, not only increased the fares but also artificially limited their operational vehicles, forcing the commuters to pay extra to get seats for a comfortable journey.
The transporters exploited the situation in their favour and minted three to four times extra fares from the commuters. Commuters and passengers for inter-district routes were helpless as transport owners showed no mercy towards them. Individuals wanting to the leave city with the families seemed more worried about managing a comfortable journey as they were not in a position to travel in light of the newly incurred hardships.
Those who could afford the overcharged prices were found purchasing tickets but there were many others registering their protests and complaining against this illegal action taken by the transport officials. And more interestingly, there was no single city administration representative found monitoring the charging patterns.
Several transport authority representatives, under anonymity, said that overcharging was just about enough to cover their expected losses. “The vehicles will return empty so who will compensate the transporters,” they questioned.
Although this justification was not enough to redress the complaints of th commuters, the exercise of overcharging continued.
On the other hand, lesser traffic was witnessed on the city roads besides business points, markets and shopping malls where Eid shopping was carried out.