Angry rickshaw drivers protest police restrictions in Herat City
HERAT CITY (Pajhwok): Rickshaw drivers complain they are subjected to inordinate restrictions by police at every intersection in the capital of the western Herat province.
At a protest meeting in Herat City, the drivers warned of resorting to earning money in illegal ways to feed their families if police continued to pester them.
One of the protestors, Sarwar Haidari, told Pajhwok Afghan News, “For a week now, all city roads have been closed for us in the name of better traffic management.”
He said: “If we take a passenger from one area to another, we are forced to ply long routes bypassing the city.” The undue curbs left drivers with little profit margins, he argued.
“Wemust be allowed to ply city roads and squares; we don’t know why police have imposed this ban on us. We don’t know what sin we have committed,” he commented.
Nabi Zarbafi, another triwheeler owner, said intersections in Gulha, Shahr-i-Naw, Cinema and Amirin Marif were no-go areas for rickshaw drivers.
Another protestor, Gul Ahmad, claimed that all city roads had virtually been closed for them. At times, he alleged, police beat the drivers venturing into the areas.
“To our complaints, police respond with insult us and tell us to commit suicide. We don’t know what kind of law it is. What should the jobless people do?” asked an angry protestor, Ajmal.
Meanwhile, Herat police spokesman Abdur Rauf Ahmadi said they had met representatives of the protesting rickshaw drivers and some roads had been reopened for them.
This is the second protest of rickshaw drivers on the issue in the past one week in Herat.
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