Published: Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Entry to Baridhara

Ban slapped on lungi clad rickshaw-pullers

A lungi clad rickshaw puller stopped at the entry of Baridhara in the capital yesterday. Security workers do not let rickshaw pullers in lungi into the posh neighbourhood following instructions from the association of Baridhara home owners. Photo: Star

A lungi clad rickshaw-puller stopped at the entry of Baridhara in the capital yesterday. Security workers do not let rickshaw-pullers in lungi into the posh neighbourhood following instructions from the association of Baridhara home owners. Photo: Star


Rickshaw-pullers in traditional Bangalee outfit, lungi, are barred from entering the capital’s Baridhara, one of the country’s most posh neighbourhoods where diplomats and affluent people live.
Baridhara home owners’ association, Baridhara Society, has instructed security personnel not to let in rickshaw-pullers in lungi, requiring them to be in trousers to enter Baridhara, particularly Block K, said security men and local commuters.
As The Daily Star correspondent arrived at the lakeside entry of Baridhara at 11:45am yesterday, he found that the security man on duty Abdul Kader had stopped a rickshaw- puller for wearing lungi and forced the two passengers on board to get down.
One of the passengers, Nasir Uddin Ahmed, who is manager of a private company in Baridhara, said, “Dictating a person’s clothing is an infringement upon an individual’s personal liberty and right.”
Meanwhile, Kader intercepted several more rickshaw-pullers but let in a score of others in lungi, as the passengers defied his instruction.
A good many rickshaw-pullers were found entering the neighbourhood in trousers without facing any hassle.
Talking to The Daily Star, Kader said, “The society issued the instruction about two months back.”
The society president Firoz Hasan said, “We just wanted the rickshaw- pullers to put on decent clothes and did not issue any ban on lungi.” But barring rickshaw-pullers in lungi might have occurred in one or two cases, he said. “We will look into it.”
Adilur Rahman Khan, secretary of the rights group Odhikar, said such restrictions amount to a violation of cultural, constitutional and human rights of an individual.
There are nearly 500 houses of which around 130 are occupied by diplomatic missions in Baridhara K Block between Progoti Sarani and Baridhara Lake, with Kalachandpur to the north and Mariam Tower to the south.

  • Rayhana Sultan

    It is as if the fathers and forefathers of these elite and education citizens of our city has never clad themselves in lungi ever, and as if, these people made it to such posh life of Baridhara without ever having their own fathers walking the path of an ordinary Bangladeshi who never wore a lungi.

  • Mehdiur Rahman


  • Mickey

    Glad to see the dress code is getting upgraded
    [sarcastic scoff]. Expecting ferry walls and laborers to show up in
    casual evening suits in a few years. Question
    – what if the rickshaw puller has trousers but the passenger is an
    upper class person in a lungi going to a Halloween party?

  • Shochorik

    Guys seriously please tell me you all have better things to do.. The respective authorities said they are looking into the matter and you all are still protesting!! please think about actual important stuff thats going in this country.

  • Zaman

    They should introduce a passport system for entry !!

  • tanjina

    i lived in baridhara too but i never heard this type of things. he who impose it should provide pants for the rickshawalas.

  • Zahir Karna

    What are you talking about?!?!?!?
    Be careful about making assumptions about other people. And even if all the people in Baridhara wore mini-skirts, so what? By itself it does not mean anything.

  • Zahir Karna

    Excellent point – this is something we should consider, and I never thought about. Thank you for bringing it up.
    The real issue is the offensive behavior of the average person on the street – whether shopkeepers, ricksha pullers, CNG drivers, police, And yes, affluent people are just as offensive, although we don’t see it as often since there are not so many of them.
    This is a basic social issue.

  • Shahrin Rahman

    What’s the point of Bangladesh if there’s no Lungi?

  • foreigner

    Omar, “these societies” would only be Bangladesh. The Baridhara Society is made up primarily of affluent Bangladeshis, not the diplomats. And most of the diplomats and other foreigners have enough respect for the culture here that we buy new clothes so we don’t offend anyone with our old clothes that we’ve worn all of our lives. Yes, at home, we wear mini-skirts (well, maybe not after a certain age), but here, I wear shalwar kameez, long shirts, and a scarf to hide myself.

  • foreigner

    In the UK or USA, no one would really care if you wore a lungi. They might look at you strange because men usually wear pants, but that’s about it.