• Monday, Jul 06, 2020
  • Last Update : 10:29 pm

Covid-19: This battle to be won if all hands are on the deck

  • Published at 08:30 pm May 19th, 2020
police-covid-19-corona-coronavirus-Mahmud Hossain Opu
Photo: Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

The view came from participants of an online Let’s Talk episode, regarding the role of youths in overcoming the Covid-19 crisis, organized by CRI on Monday night

Bangladeshi wicketkeeper-batsman Mushfiqur Rahim commended the contribution of the youths during the ongoing pandemic and said the situation can be overcome through united efforts.

“I have just watched the video of Young Bangla. Youths are on the frontline in this time of crisis, as one might expect of them. The mission they set out on deserves an ovation,” said the Bangladesh Men’s Cricket Team member.

The former captain said the youths delivered on their promise with utmost love and care, adding: “We will emerge strong out of this turmoil if all hands are on deck. Otherwise, it will be tough to handle.”

His effusive words came out when he joined an online Let’s Talk episode on Monday night regarding the role of youths in overcoming the Covid-19 crisis, said the Centre for Research and Information (CRI) on Tuesday, reports UNB.

Sharing some personal insight, he said cricketers’ lives are mostly spent on the playing-field but he has isolated himself in his house for the last two months as safety must be prioritized above all.

“I cannot be anywhere else during this crisis. Never before did we have to face a crisis of this scale. This is why we must abide by the government’s instructions for our own safety,” Mushfiqur commented.

“Our law enforcement agencies and healthcare professionals are doing everything they can to ensure our safety. We should follow the government directives even if it is to respect their dedication and effort,” he remarked.

Chirkutt Band's Sumi shared his sentiments at the programme conducted by Nahim Razzaq, MP.

She lauded the youths of this country who came forward with the undying flame of courage at the time of this epidemic.

“In a country where everyone has a role to play—big or small depending on age and capability—I don’t think any crisis is big enough defeat us. Crises and challenges have always followed us. The scale may be larger this time but we can ride out this storm,” she said.

“As artistes, we have a big job to do—keeping people psychologically healthy. This is why I am going to present you with ‘Aalor Gaan’ (The Song of Light). You can sing this song standing in your balcony or beside the window and send the file to us,” the singer added.

Domestic violence on the rise

Nobonita Chowdhury, a journalist, during the show pointed out that domestic violence has been on the rise due to the lockdown.

She said: “There is no exact statistics on violence against women in Bangladesh. Women do not even know where to contact in the time of emergency or when someone becomes a victim. This violence puts the lives of children in danger as well.”

Governments caught unawares

Hailing this initiative of youths, Waseqa Ayesha Khan, MP, said, “I got in touch with quite a few young Bangladeshi activists from different corners of the country. I have been in Chittagong since March 26. Youths are working wholeheartedly there and elsewhere.”

Reflecting on this epidemic, she commented that no government of this world was prepared to face this pandemic.

“As it was totally unexpected, there was no scope to draw parallels from past experiences. It is not going to be over anytime soon. Even the World Health Organization is in the dark as to when this crisis will end. No specialist could make any prediction either. In this situation, the prime minister announced 18 stimulus packages. All entrepreneurs fall under the purview of this," she further added. 

Aid for youths

As per the discussions so far, the youths working to this end may receive financial assistance when this crisis is over.

They may receive Tk500 crore as loans through Karmasangsthan Bank. 

Referring to current start-ups and entrepreneurships, JCI Bangladesh President Sarah Kamal said: “You cannot know when the situation will return to normalcy, neither do we know how that normal situation will look like. That is why I can say that we have as much scope as a risk. We must work on every possibility.”

Jaago Foundation Founder Korvi Rakshand said: “Starting from the language movement to all other historical turnarounds, youths have always been at the forefront in our country. I think there should be a national mapping of these youth organizations and coordination among them. This should be done under the supervision of the ministry dedicated to youths.”

Joy Bangla Youth Award Winner Fahima Khatun, Sadat Rahman of Narail Volunteers, Kamrun Nesa Mira of All for One Foundation, Mahidur Rahman of NIYSHAN in Naogan, and Zafar Shafi of The Earth Foundation also shared their observations during the program.

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