Public transport suspended from Monday
Covid-19 does not seem to be letting up in Bangladesh, as the country reported the highest ever single-day death toll due to the pandemic on Sunday — a day after the government announced an all-out lockdown to be effective from Thursday to check the spread of the viral disease.
The health authorities reported 119 deaths on Sunday, taking the total death toll of Covid-19 to 14,172. The new tally surpassed the previous record of 112 reported on April 19 this year.
Khulna, the newest pandemic hotspot in the country, reported 32 deaths - the highest among the eight divisions - followed by Dhaka with 24 deaths. Chittagong and Rajshahi divisions counted 22 deaths each, while Rangpur reported nine, Sylhet five, Mymensingh three, and Barisal two.
Another 5,268 people tested positive in the 24 hours to 8am on Sunday, raising the total nationwide caseload to 888,406.
Dhaka logged 1,648 cases, the highest among the divisions, followed by Khulna with 1,202 cases and Rajshahi with 962, according to the latest figures by the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS).
As many as 24,400 samples were tested across the country, for a positivity rate of 21.59%.
The mortality rate against the total number of cases detected so far stands at 1.6%.
Another 3,249 patients recovered from the infectious disease across the country, taking the total number of recovery to 804,103.
The pandemic has, so far, claimed the lives of 10,118 men (71.39%) and 4,054 women (28.61%).
Public transport suspended from Monday
In a notification issued on Sunday, the Cabinet Division said all kinds of public transport services, except for rickshaws and vehicles carrying emergency goods, would be suspended from 6am on Monday till 6am on Thursday.
Shopping malls, markets, resorts and community centres will also be closed during this period.
Restaurants and eateries can operate from 8am to 8pm only for takeaway services.
Government and private offices have been told to operate with a skeleton staff while ensuring transportation for them. Meanwhile, banks are slated to continue operating in limited capacity.
Khulna’s Covid deaths keep rising
Khulna had the highest number of deaths again on Sunday, with 32 deaths. With the latest development, the death toll now stands at 1,165 in the division.
Of the new fatalities, five each are from Khulna, Jessore, and Bagerhat districts; four each from Narail and Khustia; three from Jhenaidah; and two each from Magura, Chuadanga, and Meherpur.
Twelve of the deceased were admitted at Khulna Medical College Hospital and three others were admitted at Gazi Medical College Hospital.
Meanwhile, 236 patients tested positive for the virus in Khulna Medical College rt-PCR lab in the 24-hour period. According to the new numbers, the detection rate stands at 49.57%.
Over 300 deaths at RMCH in June
The coronavirus unit at the Rajshahi Medical College Hospital (RMCH) has recorded 301 deaths in June after 10 more fatalities were reported in the 24 hours to Sunday morning.
“This is the highest-ever death toll in a month at the Covid unit. The figure was 29 in January, 17 in February, 31 in March, 79 in April, and 124 in May,” RMCH Director Brig Gen Shamim Yazdani told Dhaka Tribune.
Of the 10 fatalities in the 24 hours, one tested positive while the rest had symptoms, he said.
Four of them were from Rajshahi, as many from Natore and two came from Chapainawabganj, added the RMCH director.
Additionally, 55 patients were admitted to the Covid unit on Sunday.
Mad rush at ferry terminals
Following the announcement of lockdown, thousands of people continued to flock to Shimulia ferry terminal in Munshiganj's Louhajong upazila on Sunday to leave the capital, Dhaka Tribune’s Narayanganj correspondent reported.
Ferries were packed with countless passengers with little to no space between each other, while a few were seen standing atop goods-laden transports on the ferries in an attempt to steer clear of the crowd.
The number of vehicles at the terminal and on the ferries was also high as people were rushing to their destinations in private cars and microbuses.
Mawa traffic police In-Charge Zakir Hossain said the terminal was noticeably more jam-packed on Sunday compared to the day before.
“At least 400 vehicles are waiting for ferries. The vehicle queue is now under control, but the crowd has become unmanageable; no one is following Covid-19 safety protocols,” he added.
Vaccination in progress
In the 24 hours to Sunday morning, 2,066 people received a second dose of Oxford-Astrazeneca vaccine, taking the total number of people receiving the second dose of vaccine to nearly 4.284 million.
A little over 5.82 million people have received the first dose of the vaccine.
Additionally, 6,784 people received the first dose of Sinopharm vaccine over the same period, taking the total to 39,472 till now, while 50 people received the second dose of the vaccine in 24 hours, taking the total to 418 till on Sunday.
Meanwhile, as many as 240 people received the first dose of Pfizer vaccine till now.