File photo: Local police and ward council volunteers are monitoring the lockdown measures in this coronavirus 'red zone' Md Manik/Dhaka Tribune
Curb on all kinds of assembly as virus cases and deaths surge
In light of the rising cases of Covid-19 in the country, the government has imposed a new set of restrictions, including a ban on all public gatherings in areas with high rate of infections.
In a gazette notification on Monday, it asked to limit gatherings in all types of events, including social, political and religious.
It also said that buses will not be allowed to carry passengers more than half of their seating capacity and have maintain the safety guidelines.
The notification signed by the prime minister's Principal Secretary Ahmad Kaikaus with 18 directives will be effective immediately.
It will remain in place initially for the two weeks.
On Monday, Bangladesh reported 5,181 new Covid-19 cases, the highest-ever daily jump since the pandemic unfolded in March last year.
During the same time, the country saw another 45 deaths, the highest daily fatality since August 28 last year. The seven-day moving average of deaths stood at 30.57, highest since December 21.
The daily infection rate was below 5% for about two months. It, however, started to rise from the second week of March. It saw a steep rise on Sunday as it jumped to 18.38% from 17.56% the previous day.
Since March last year, the novel coronavirus has killed 8,949 people after infecting 600, 895 people across the country.
All kinds of public gatherings (social, political, religious and others) should be restricted. Public assembly are prohibited in high-infection areas. Public gatherings on the occasion of any social event, including wedding and birthday parties, should be discouraged.
Proper hygiene rules should be ensured in all places of worship, including mosques.
Public gatherings in tourist attractions, cinema hall and theaters have to be made limited as well as fairs and exhibitions of all kinds should be discouraged;
Public transports must comply with hygiene rules and cannot carry passengers more than 50% of its seating capacity;
Inter-district vehicular movement should be restricted to high-risk areas of infection and should be kept shut if necessary;
International travelers entering the country will be required to serve 14-day institutional quarantine at hotels at their own expenses;
Arrangements have to be made for sale and purchase of daily necessities in open space in compliance with hygiene rules. Pharmacies must ensure proper hygiene.
Healthcare facilities will have to ensure proper hygiene measures, including wearing of masks all the time;
In shopping malls, both buyers and sellers must ensure proper hygiene;
All the educational institutions (pre-primary, primary, madrasa, secondary, higher secondary, universities) and coaching centres will remain closed;
Unnecessarily roaming and gathering must be stopped. Going out after 10pm without emergency needs to be controlled;
If individual goes out in need, s/he will have to maintain of all kinds of hygiene rules, including wearing a mask. Legal actions should be taken if the mask is not worn or hygiene guidelines are violated;
Isolation of person with the symptoms and infected by Covid-19 should be ensured. Others who come into close contact with the person affected by the disease must be quarantined;
All government and non-government offices/institutions, except those provide emergency services, should be run by 50% manpower. Arrangements of working from home should be made for members of the staff who are pregnant, sick and above 55-year-old;
Meetings, seminars, trainings, workshops should be arranged virtually as much as possible;
Proper hygiene norms should be ensured in case of any kind of public examination which is required to appear physically:
Hotels and restaurants must be barred from serving clients more than 50% of the capacity;
Wearing masks and maintaining hygiene rules mandatory at workplaces;
According to the circular, the directives will come into effect after immediately and will remain in force initially for two weeks.
Ministry sources said that they will look into the situation of next 14 days. Partial lockdown in zonal basis may be imposed if situation in these days deteriorates.