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Dhaka Tribune

Coronavirus: Supreme Court makes courts off limits to prisoners

A notice signed by Registrar General Md Ali Akbar has been published on the apex court’s website

Update : 19 Mar 2020, 09:45 PM

The Supreme Court of Bangladesh has ordered the authorities concerned not to produce prisoners and suspects before the courts for legal proceedings, amid growing safety concern due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.  

A notice, signed by the apex court’s registrar general, Md Ali Akbar, was published on the court website on Thursday, which says producing prisoners and suspects physically before the courts is highly risky considering the current situation. 

"For this reason, hearing of bail petitions will be held with the detainees and the accused in jail,” the notice says. 

“For others cases, trial proceedings may be postponed if necessary," the notice further says.  

This order is effective immediately across Bangladesh, and will remain in place until further instruction, it adds.

Beside publication on the Supreme Court website, the notice was served to officials and offices concerned, including the law secretary and inspector general of police, all district and session judges, all metropolitan and session judges, all superintendents of police, presidents and secretaries of all the bar associations across the country, and all superintendents in jail. 

With four fresh confirmations on Thursday, the number of the novel coronavirus patients in Bangladesh now stands at 18. Among them, three recovered fully and were released, while a 70-year-old patient died on Wednesday. 

With an outbreak in Wuhan city, in China’s Hubei province, in late December 2019, the Covid-19 infection, caused by a new strain of coronavirus, has become a global pandemic, affecting 176 countries and territories. 

According to the Coronavirus Resource Center of Johns Hopkins University, as of 9pm on March 19, Bangladesh time, the total confirmed cases of Covid-19 infection around the world stands at 227,310, and the death toll is 9,311.

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