In many areas of the city, UNB found people waiting on the roads, desperately looking to hail ride-sharing cabs and shared autos to reach their destination.

Several commuters complained that the auto and cycle rickshaw drivers were taking advantage of the situation by overcharging them. "Auto drivers are demanding double the fare. It's a nightmare for us," said an office-goer.

Traffic inspector Akteruzzaman (Uttara Rajlaxmi), said, "I have not spotted a single bus on the roads since morning. Only cabs, private vehicles and autos are plying."

On Thursday, convenor of Bangladesh Truck-Covered Van, Tank Lorry and Prime Movers Owners and Workers Coordination Council Md Rustom Ali announced their decision to go on an indefinite strike, following an emergency meeting.

Leaders of the Council said the government raised the toll tax for using Bangabandhu Bridge and Muktarpur Bridge from 257 per cent to 300 per cent "illogically" on 2 November and then it raised the prices of fuel.

Transport services had remained suspended for a long time due to Covid in the past two years. When the transport owners are trying to make a turnaround from their huge losses caused by the Covid shutdown, the decision of raising the bridge toll and fuel prices was announced," the Council said in a statement.

On Wednesday, the government raised the prices of diesel and kerosene to Tk 80 from Tk 65 at the retail level.

In a statement, the power, energy and mineral resources ministry said that "Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC) has been incurring a loss of Tk 200 million per day as it is selling diesel at Tk 13.01 lower per litre and furnace oil at Tk 6.21 per litre, lower than their imported prices".

It said the petroleum prices have been readjusted against the backdrop of price hike of petroleum in the international market.

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