I am an avid listener of Radio Today 89.6 or Radio Foorti 98.4. I keep on switching between the two channels depending on the mood. However whenever I am driving or being driven, I have been trying to rely on Radio Today's traffic update program called 'Aktel Dhakar Chaka'. Ever since the launch of this program, I find the scope of airing it being narrowed day by day. The on-the-street reporters of the program also sound more exhausted and weary as they gasp for breathe and inform the city dwellers that too many cars in the street between Gulshan-1 and Gulshan-2 'theke theke jam srishti korche', or when they say the it would take you 5-7 signals to cross between Panthapath and Farmgate or Farmgate to Shahbag etc. We really can't blame them can we, mere young bloods out there in the polluted streets of a horribly unplanned capital, just working for some quick bucks or work experience. The city's traffic system will come to a gridlock by june 3rd 2009...(imaginery date) you will take out your car from home and get stuck immediately with your neighbors in the cars next to you even before you hit the main roads. And when the stakeholders will feel that nothing is moving and their near and dear ones are dying because of stuck ambulances in traffic jams, they will start building flyovers at important and busy junctions of Dhaka. So its just a prediction, a rather grim one, that we are heading for a complete locked traffic system. Given the current deteorating circumstances, 'Aktel Dhaka Chaka' does not make my car move anymore, it sounds like a useless program as there is nothing new to report other than sorry tales from the streets of Dhaka. And its even more sad to hear Aktel's name again and again with the show. It conveys some sort of a 'loser's message. They were caught napping when Banglalink and Warid whooshed by them and Aktel still burps with the punchline 'ekjon kintu egiyei thake...', I wonder does it really matter if you are running the race alone when the race has already finished and the winner are respectively GrameenPhone, BanglaLink and Warid? Look back and you won't see anybody running behind you...other than gov-whip-boy Teletalk and CityCell. Aktel also screwed up big time with the golden coin offer, as BTRC intervened and banned all sort of monetary rewards, lottery-like activities in the name of promotion.
Dhaka city will continue experiencing horrible traffic jams. Radio Today will keep on airing Aktel Dhakar Chaka. Aktel will keep on associating its brand with something 'not so good anymore'. Life will move on. I will be happy if all this is proven wrong.