• Tuesday, Feb 25, 2020
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Home minister: No masks during Pohela Boishakh celebrations

  • Published at 07:09 pm April 3rd, 2019
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Students at Dhaka University's Faculty of Fine Art busy making traditional masks at the faculty premises on Tuesday, April 2, 2019 Mehedi Hasan/Dhaka Tribune

No Bangla New Year programs after 6pm on April 14, says the minister

Wearing masks during the Mongol Shobhajatra on Pohela Boishakh will not be allowed, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal said on Wednesday.

The Mongol Shobhajatra is a mass procession organized by Dhaka University’s (DU) Faculty of Fine Arts that takes place at dawn on the first day of Bangla month Boishakh, which is also the first day of the Bangla New Year, in Bangladesh.

The university students make brightly-coloured, hand-held traditional masks besides other artefacts for their parade which is central to the celebrations.

“If anyone wants they can keep the masks in their hands,” the home minister told reporters on Wednesday, after an emergency meeting regarding safety measures during the Pohela Boishakh celebrations on April 14.

He said that stern security measures will be in place especially at popular spots such as Charukala, Ramna, DU and Rabindra Sarabar so that everyone can enjoy the day safely.

The Dhaka Metropolitan Police will have a plan for the entire city to regulate traffic, he said, adding that apart from the ban on wearing masks, no one will be allowed to enter Mongol Shobhajatra mid way.

Also Read- Charukola gears up as Pohela Boishakh nears

He said that loud whistles will also be banned. “No one will be allowed to enter Pohela Boishakh programs after 5pm and everyone must leave the programs by 6pm.

The minister added that only cars with special stickers will be allowed to enter the DU campus on April 13.

“The diplomatic zones in the city will be very specially monitored,” Kamal said.

He said the Fire Service and Civil Defence diving teams will be deployed at Hatirjheel, Ramna Park, Gulshan Lake and Dhanmondi Lake.“Plainclothes policemen will be there to ensure that eve-teasing does not take place and steps will be taken to control use of narcotics.”

Responding to queries on whether there was any chance of violence during the programs, he said: “We received no such news.”

He added that the law enforcement agencies were alert and ready to tackle any situation, and it will be ensured that no one can misuse the social media platforms.