Wednesday, July 17, 2024

Not two, only one ticket!

Latent irregularities marked the first day of selling the World Cup’s opening ceremony tickets at various Dhaka Bank branches in the city yesterday.
According to the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) a total of 9,700 tickets have been put on sale and the tickets are being sold through 10 branches of the bank.
As of the filing of this report, it was yet unclear whether all the tickets for the opening ceremony had been sold out.
“We have kept the tickets open till the date of the opening ceremony, but based on the response, I think the tickets will be sold out by tomorrow [Monday], if they haven’t been already,” said BCB’s Ticket and Seating Committee chairman, GS Hasan Tamim stating that he had yet to receive official confirmation from Dhaka Bank about how many tickets had been sold.
As was widely expected, the demand for tickets far exceeded the supply as fans thronged to the designated branches of Dhaka Bank well ahead of time. Numerous dedicated followers lined up as much as twenty-four hours beforehand to get the chance to grasp a prized ticket.
But many in queue were left bewildered at a sudden U-turn by the Dhaka Bank authorities, who went back on their original advertised agreement of allowing a maximum of two tickets per individual.
“I lined up since 11:30pm last night [Saturday] to get two tickets for my parents,” said Selim, a 25-year-old student who had queued up at the Gulshan Branch.
“But once inside the bank, I was informed that I would only be able to purchase one, instead of the two tickets that was advertised.”
Similar stories rang across different other venues as a number of people also complained of Dhaka Bank’s about turn in distribution of the tickets.
Rashed, a young professional in his late twenties, who had lined up at the Mirpur Branch also complained that he was unable to exercise his option of two tickets.
“I had lined up since one at night for tickets for myself and my wife, but once inside I discovered that I could purchase only one, which is not what was advertised.
“I stood in line again, but well before my number came up the second time, I was told that tickets had run out,” he said.
A Dhaka Bank official at the Mirpur Branch, on condition of anonymity, admitted they had distributed only one instead of the two advertised but said the decision to do such was due to the massive upsurge in demand and based on the advice of the members of police and RAB at the venue.
“Far more people turned up than we had imagined. We were only given 400 tickets and thus were advised by the police ADC that due to security reasons it would be best if we appeased a larger number of people rather than giving two to each.”
But that logic cut no ice with the masses who had lined up beforehand.
“How is it fair that we stood for one whole day and got one ticket while some stood in line for a few hour and got the same?” wailed Shofiq at Dhaka Bank’s Dhanmondi Branch.
Tamim also admitted that he had heard about some of these concerns from a number of sources but categorically stated that BCB had not imposed any such clauses on the bank.
“We handed them about 10,000 tickets and we only told them that one person can get a maximum of two tickets, nothing else,” said Tamim.
Dhaka Bank’s executive vice-president, Azad Shamsi however stated they had received only 7,000 tickets from BCB and suggested that they had distributed the tickets evenly across the ten branches.
“Divide the total number (7,000) by ten and you will get the number of tickets at each branch,” he said sounding irritated.
When asked whether the decision to distribute only one ticket to each individual was made centrally, Shamsi seemed incensed and refused to answer the question and presently hung up the phone.
Further attempts to contact him over telephone proved futile.


Via: The Daily Star

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