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PESHAWAR: Afghan Transporters and Trailer Owners Association has expressed concerns over diversion of its vehicles from Karkhano Market to Mattani bypass and demanded of the authorities to lift ban on movement of loaded trucks on Jamrud Road.

A delegation of the transporters held a meeting with Customs Collector Dr Saeed Jadoon at his office here on Tuesday, said a statement.

The transporters said that ban was imposed several months ago on movement of heavy vehicles on the route owing to traffic hurdles created after initiation of work on construction of Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project. They said that the ban caused hardships for the transporters.

The transporters said that the diversion of traffic increased their journey from Afghanistan to Peshawar by four hours. They said that the decision resulted in huge financial losses to them and business community.

The statement said that the worst affected by the decision were the traders of fresh fruits and vegetable as those items could not reach the destination in original shape due to the hot weather and long route.

Referring to work on BRT, the transporters said that at least 50 per cent of the project had been completed and roads had also been opened in most parts of Peshawar. They said that the Afghan goods transport vehicles should be allowed to move on their old route.

The collector assured the transporters to discuss the issue with relevant departments to take a decision. He said that BRT was basic need of all the people and would help to reduce traffic load on the existing roads.

He said that Customs department had nothing to do with the ban but it was imposed by traffic police and officials of Khyber tribal district. He said that the matter would be discussed with them.

Published in Dawn, September 5th, 2018