The government of Bangladesh is going to impose the ‘strictest’ 14-day restrictions on public movement and businesses from today to contain the spread of Covid infection across the country.
The restrictions, From July 23 to August 5, would be stricter than earlier ones, state minister for public administration Farhad Hossain told journalists on Thursday.
If the restrictions are implemented strictly for the 14 days, the rate of infections will be reduced, he said.
If otherwise, the restrictions would be extended, he added.
Earlier, the government on July 13 relaxed the restrictions for eight days from July 14 midnight to 6:00am on July 23, reopening all businesses and public transports for the celebration of Eid-ul-Azha, movement of people, pre-Eid business activities and also for keeping economic activities normal.
The decision had been taken despite concerns that such relaxation would further worsen the Covid situation which kept deteriorating especially since June.
‘As all the offices, garments factories and all export oriented industries will be closed during these restrictions, this time the restrictions will be stricter,’ said Farhad Hossain.
He said that the offices and garment factories would remain closed this time and people would not have any need to go outside.
Besides members of Bangladesh police, Border Guard Bangladesh and Bangladesh Army personnel will be deployed in the field to enforce the restriction, he continued.
The state minister also said that the people who had already gone home should come back after August 5 as they knew that their workplaces would remain closed during the upcoming restrictions.
People’s support is necessary to reduce the rate of infection and, for that, they will have to stay at home, he said.
He urged the countrymen not to go outside without an emergency and said that, if anyone need to go out of home for any emergency, he or she would have to wear mask.
Farhad Hossian said that if the ‘strict lockdown’ could be implemented for the next 14 days, the rate of infection would certainly be reduced and managing the pressure of patients in hospitals would be easier.
The government on June 30 ordered the countrywide restrictions from July 1 for a week, shutting all government and non-government offices except the ones involved in emergency services and all motorised public transports.
The ‘strict restrictions’ were later extended till July 14 amid widespread violations.
Bangladesh Sangbad sangstha adds: to contain further spreading of corona virus infection, a 23-points restrictions will be enforced with an instruction of closure of all government, semi-government, autonomous , private offices along with travel curbs on road, rail, river and domestic aviation services during this time.
All kinds of shopping malls, market along with all types of tourism centers, resorts, community centers and recreation centers also will remain closed under the new restrictions.
Even all the industries will remain closed and all sort of gatherings including birthday, picnic, party, social, political and religious functions which attract crowd will remain suspended.
The supreme court will issue necessary instructions for the respective courts. Bank, insurance companies and financial institutions at the same time will issue necessary instruction for operating those organizations.
The new restrictions have asked all government employees to remain standby at their respective working stations and complete their official works on virtual form.
Officials of the Law enforcing agencies, emergency services like agricultural products and ingredients, food crops, food transportation, selling , distribution, health care services, Covid vaccination, NID distributions, revenue earning activities, power, water, gas, fire services, telephone, internet, mass media, private security system, post, bank, visa providing activities, social safety programme, pharmacy and pharmaceuticals are allowed to travel after showing their respective identity cards.
Emergency cargo transportations including truck, lorry, covered van, river vessel, cargo train, ferry, all land ports and its adjacent offices will be excluded out of the purview of the restrictions.
But the kitchen market and the daily essentials would be sold from 9:00am to 3:00pm following proper health safety guidelines. The kitchen market authorities and the local administration will ensure the matter.
Food shops, hotel and restaurants are allowed to sell food through online from 8:00am in the morning to 8:00pm at night. International flights will remain in operation and the foreign flight passengers are allowed travel by showing their international travel ticket.
The religious affairs ministry will give instructions for prayer in the mosque with due corona health guidelines.
The Armed forces division will deploy necessary number of troops to ensure effective patrolling at the field level under the rules of army in aid of the civil administration. The district magistrate will ensure this after communicating with the local military commander.
The public administration ministry will ensure appointment of necessary number of executive magistrates at the field level.
District administration and the police forces will be given necessary legal power by the director general of the directorate of the health services under the infectious disease (prevention, control and elimination) act 2018.
The Covid pandemic has so far claimed the lives of 18,498 people and infected 11,36,503 others across Bangladesh so far.