A weeklong stricter lockdown is underway across the country from 6:00am Wednesday in a bid to check alarming rise of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Presence of people on the city streets early this morning was very thin. Law enforcers were seen patroling on roads. They were working on the implementation of the lockdown.
Except for emergency services, all government and private offices and factories are closed during the lockdown. Public transport services are also suspended.
A set of restrictions has also been imposed during the nationwide lockdown from 14-21 April.
On the other hand, all the departments, offices under the Health Services Division of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare will be operational as usual.
Following an instruction of the Cabinet Division, the Bangladesh Bank asked all banks to operate on a limited scale (10am to 1pm) for seven days during the lockdown.
Earlier, the government’s Cabinet Division issued a notification regarding the lockdown. The notification provides guidelines for the lockdown.
The directives are –
1. All public transport services (roads, railway and domestic flights) will remain suspended. However, the directive will not be applicable to goods-laden vehicles, production systems and emergency services. Besides, this ban will not be effective on the person who is going abroad or returning from abroad.
2. Offices, employees and transports involved in law and order and emergency services – relief distribution, health service, electricity, water, gas/fuel, fire service, activities at ports (land, river and sea), telephone and internet, telecommunication and other services will remain out of the purview of the restriction.
3. All government/non-government/autonomous offices, courts and private offices can facilitate commute of their employees to work using their own transport on a limited scale. Industries and factories can do the same for their workers. Factories under BGMEA and the BKMEA have to take measures regarding field hospital/treatment for their workers.
4. None can go out from 6:00 pm to 6:00 am except for emergencies (medicine and daily essentials, treatment and burial/cremation, etc).
5. Only the sale and supply of foods (from 12:00 pm to 7:00 pm and 12:00 am to 6:00 am) (takeaway/online) can be operated by restaurants. None can eat food sitting in the hotel and restaurant.
6. All shops, including shopping malls, will remain closed. But shops can continue wholesale and online services. In that case, they have to maintain health guidelines.
7. Buying and selling of kitchen items and daily essentials will be done only in open spaces from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm following the hygiene rules. The authorities concerned and local administration will ensure the services.
8. Bangladesh Bank will provide necessary directives to continue bank activities on a limited scale.
9. The Armed Forces Division will take necessary measures to set up a field hospital at a convenient location in Dhaka.
Armed forces will take measures to establish field hospitals in a suitable location in Dhaka.
10. District and field-level administration across the country will take effective measures to implement the directives and law enforcement agencies will intensify regular patrols.
11. The concerned district administration will coordinate the transport of agricultural workers in case of an urgent need to harvest Boro paddy.
12. Ministry of Religious Affairs will issue guidelines on Jumma congregation (Friday prayer) and Taraweeh prayers following health rules
13. Strict legal action will be taken against those who disobey these directives.