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Tok Tok vehicles now in Lebanon


In a special feature on means of transportation in the country, Al Akhbar daily drew attention to the tok tok cars that are widely used in South Asian and other densely populated nations, like Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sudan, but that are now up-and-coming in Lebanon’s poor neighborhoods. The motorcycle dealers introduced the tok tok to the Lebanese markets two years ago and they are now seen largely in Beirut’s outskirts of Bir Hassan, Old Airport Road, Ozai, Rihab and Dora, as well as, in Tripoli’s disadvantages areas of Tabbaneh, Old Souk, Haddadin area, Al Akhbar wrote. The newspaper said that this vehicle which largely relates to chaos and deprivation, has developed its presence in these neighborhoods as a source of livelihood to counter unemployment and housing inadequacy. Mohammad, the Kaak vendor in Rehab area of Sabra in Beirut, boasted to Al Akhbar reporter that all what an auto rickshaw require to set off is USD 1,600. Hamed who was fired from work a year ago agreed with Mohammad, recounting that he bought a tok tok and turned it into an express coffee car in the old souk of Tripoli. “It is hassle-free. I make LBP 40,000 a day which is enough to provide for a family of 5 when I could not get another job,” Hamed said. In the southern suburbs of the capital, Al Akhbar said, the tok tok is becoming a new form of transport. It is faster and cheaper by LBP1,000 compared to a regular cab, Sumaya, who uses the rickshaw for her daily shopping, said. Hassan, the tok tok driver, 19 years, while boasting that he makes LBP 40 thousand every day, said he is in constant fear of the security checkpoints, as there is no official classification for this electric vehicle yet. (Al Akhbar, August 4, 2018)

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