The government will not take any decision which could harm the people of Bangladesh, he says
State Minister for Shipping Khalid Mahmud Chowdhury has warned officials that mismanagement or violation of health protocol for Covid-19 while carrying waterway passengers will not be tolerated.
Focusing on maintaining health protocol, he said: "Every river port and inland vehicle must maintain the protocol. BIWTA [Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority], BIWTC [Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation], and law enforcement agencies will monitor all passenger vehicles.”
"If there is any mismanagement, we will take prompt action. Meanwhile, we have taken action against an official of Chandpur river port today [Sunday]," he told the media while visiting the Sadarghat river port in Dhaka on Sunday afternoon.
The state minister also inaugurated a disinfection tunnel at the entrance of Sadarghat port and visited some launches to ensure the physical distance markings on the deck.
He said: “From today [Sunday] passenger transportation in waterways has started, but it is not the final decision. If the result of reopening operations turns wrong, the government may reconsider the decision.”
"There is a timeframe of 15 days after the lifting of lockdown. I think the government will assess everything in the meantime and a combined decision will come after the timeframe."
Khalid added: "The government will not take any decision which can harm the people of Bangladesh and the country as well."
On Sunday, Bangladesh recorded the highest 40 deaths from Covid-19 and 2,545 cases in a single day.
The grim record of deaths and cases comes at a time when the country has reopened operations of all offices, businesses, and transports in limited scale, after the end of the general holiday which was extended in phases until May 30 to control the spread of coronavirus pandemic.
The limited reopening will remain in force until June 15, according to a gazette issued on May 28.