The Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) on Saturday demolished two traffic police boxes on the footpath in front of Shaheed Suhrawardy Medical College and Hospital at Sher-E-Bangla Nagar.
The structures – a new single-storey permanent building and an old temporary police box – had been set up in the College Gate area under the Tejgaon Division of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police's Traffic Department.
Dhaka North's Mayor Atiqul Islam ordered the demolition as the new structure was built occupying most of the 18-foot wide sidewalk in front of the public medical college hospital. The makeshift police box was next to it. And pedestrians using the footpath had to face problems as a result.
Dhaka North Executive Magistrate Motakabbir Ahmed conducted the drive while the mayor led the entire eviction process being present on the spot.
Traffic police officials on duty in the area requested Atiqul not to demolish the structures, but he turned down the request calling it "immoral".
The police officials even declined to talk to this correspondent in this regard.
The mayor said the wide sidewalk has been made here – keeping the hospital into consideration – so patients, pedestrians, students, children and women can move smoothly.
"But I am surprised to see the way police occupied the footpath and built boxes. It is unexpected that police boxes will be set up by completely occupying a sidewalk with their pillars and walls. No structures will be allowed to encroach on footpaths," he added.
The mayor said it will require space to set up traffic police boxes, but that should be done through discussions.
"If necessary, we will ask the government to provide space for police boxes," he added.
Atiqul also mentioned that if the police want to make any establishment on the space belonging to the city corporation, they have to do it with permission from the proper authorities.
Dhaka North arranges free dengue tests
Mayor Atiqul Islam said, for the welfare of city dwellers, free dengue tests have been arranged in 43 health centres run by the Dhaka North City Corporation.
He said this during an anti-dengue awareness campaign in the Lalmatia area of the capital on Saturday morning under the slogan "Let's clean our own homes for ten minutes at 10am every Saturday".
Addressing the city dwellers, the mayor said anyone having symptoms of dengue should go to a health centre near them and take a free dengue test without any delay.
"We have distributed enough dengue test kits to all centres. This time you can also get free tests," he added.
Atiqul said, "Give us information about the source of larvae and dengue patients. We will not penalise you for providing the information but we will arrange for larviciding and fogging your house and surrounding houses."
"But if you don't give information and we go and find larvae then strict action will be taken," he warned.