Health experts have warned that the situation will get worse in Bangladesh if people don’t follow health guidelines to curtail the spread of the virus
With an increasing movement of people, the ongoing lockdown seems to be followed in a relaxed way in the country even though the government has extended it for another week to counter the rising Covid-19 cases.
On Thursday, the number of private cars increased significantly, with long tailbacks of vehicles on many roads of the capital.
People were also seen flouting health safety guidelines at many places, including police checkpoints, banks and kitchen markets in Dhaka.
Meanwhile, health experts have warned that there will be a worsening situation in the country if people do not follow health guidelines to curtail the spread of the virus.
Police and Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) personnel were seen monitoring the movement of vehicles and people after setting up checkposts in different areas of the capital.
The police personnel at the checkposts said they had relaxed the monitoring in order to avoid major traffic jams.
They said there were more traffic jams in the morning and after office hours.
On the other hand, people on their way to business-related work complained that the police had sent them back home despite their having urgent needs to attend to.
However, law enforcement officials said most people on the streets did not have any urgent work.
Many people were seen crowding the kitchen markets, ignoring health safety rules, to buy their essential commodities.
A housewife, Jesmin Akhter, was seen going to the Kawran Bazar kitchen market with her maid, neither woman wearing a mask.
When asked why she did not wear any mask, Jesmin Akhter said it was difficult for her to bargain over prices at the kitchen market while wearing a mask.
Meanwhile, shopkeepers at the kitchen market were seen wearing masks over their chins, thus flouting health safety rules. People were also seen lowering their masks and talking.
Similar scenes were at banks and restaurants in the capital.
Talking to Dhaka Tribune, public health expert MH Chowdhury Lenin said such relaxed measures would not bring about the desired results.
“We have to ensure livelihoods but also have to prevent the deadly infections. The authorities have to improve coordination among themselves, engage the mass people to follow safety rules and provide support for underprivileged people,” he said.
Virologist Prof Nazrul Islam said there was no alternative to following health safety guidelines, which must be implemented at every level.
The authorities should immediately identify the high risk areas and bring them under regular monitoring to curb the spread of infections, said Prof Nazrul, who is a member of the National Technical Advisory Committee on Covid-19.
Meanwhile, Bangladesh resumed flights on seven domestic routes on a limited scale from Wednesday.
Inbound and outbound passengers were seen not following social distancing rules at the entry gate of Dhaka airport.
Kamrul Islam, spokesperson of US Bangla airlines, said: "We are operating flights on domestic and international routes while strictly maintaining safety."
Bangladesh on Thursday recorded 98 more deaths and 4,014 new cases in 24 hours.