• Monday, Jul 13, 2020
  • Last Update : 02:46 pm

Coronavirus: DMP shuts down shops for not following health directives

  • Published at 09:34 pm May 12th, 2020
File photo: People doing their shopping from the makeshift shops on the footpath in front of the Gausia Market, adjacent to the Dhaka New Market Mehedi Hasan/Dhaka Tribune

Dhaka’s Bongo Bazar was shut down by the DMP as the authorities there were not maintaining government-imposed health directives

The Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) has shut down several shops in the capital that were found breaching health safety directives issued by the government amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

They also issued warnings and allowed some shops to reopen after they managed to attain the required safety equipment and measures for themselves as well as their customers. 

Dhaka’s Bongo Bazar was shut down by the DMP as the authorities there were not maintaining government-imposed health directives. 

Speaking to Dhaka Tribune, HM Azimul Haque, DMP (Ramna zone) additional deputy commissioner (ADC) of, said: “They (shop owners, staff at Bongo Bazar) were not maintaining social distancing. They have lanes that are just 2.5 feet in width! And in that small space, we saw that sellers were sitting on stools hawking for customers. 

“We have no plans to reopen the market very soon. Bongo Bazar will remain closed as there is a high risk of one’s getting infected with Covid-19 there.”

Meanwhile, Noor Mansion Shopping Centre and Jahan Mansion in the city’s Elephant Road area were closed down by the police. 

“We shut down Noor Mansion Shopping Centre and Jahan Mansion in the capital at around 11:30am on Tuesday. We also told them to manage the required hygiene materials for safety as soon as possible,” said, Md Shahed Mia, DMP (New Market zone) ADC.

“We also closed down multiple shops in the area for not maintaining the required health safety directives and told them that they could reopen only if they are fully prepared by Wednesday morning.”

A panjabi brand shop named “Lanka” was also shut down, but then was allowed to conduct business as they managed to arrange the necessary health safety equipment after the police had served a warning on them.

Moreover, in Dhanmondi, two brand shops and two shopping malls were shut down.

“Vive, near Rapa Plaza, didn’t have a single sanitization material,” said DMP (Dhanmondi zone) ADC Abdullahil Kafi. “Aranya on Dhanmondi 27 was also seen neglecting the health directives about coronavirus,” he added.

“Earlier on Sunday, two shopping malls — ADC Empire Plaza on Satmasjid Road and A R A Centre Shopping Mall on Mirpur road — were shut down for failing to maintain Covid-19 health standards.

“However, on Monday they were allowed to reopen as they had ensured proper hygiene at the malls and shops,” he added. 

When contacted, DMP Deputy Commissioner (media) Masudur Rahman said: “We will continue such drives till the Covid-19 situation improves.

“We provided the Bangladesh Shop Owners Association with guidelines to ensure the safety of shop owners and customers. We are monitoring everything in this regard.”

“If we think that any shop is unsafe, we will shut it down. If they maintain Covid-19 health guidelines, then they can reopen their businesses immediately,” he added.

Earlier last week, the government decided to reopen shopping malls on a limited scale from May 10 to allow people to do their Eid shopping despite criticism from health experts.

Several guidelines were issued for shops that are to open, including the installation of disinfection tunnels and thermal scanners, the mandatory wearing of masks and gloves by both sellers and buyers, and the maintaining of social distancing at all times.

However, such prominent shopping malls of the country as Jamuna Future Park, Bashundhara City and New Market, among others, decided not to reopen in a bid to stop the spread of the deadly coronavirus. 

Shopping has been suspended since March 26 as part of the lockdown enforced by the government to prevent the spread of Covid-19. 

As of Tuesday, Bangladesh had confirmed 16,660 coronavirus cases, with the death toll rising to 250 after 11 new fatalities were reported.

Till now the fast-spreading coronavirus has claimed more than 288,000 lives and infected more than 4,287,000 people globally, according to Worldometer.

As many as 1,544,667 people have recovered from Covid-19, which has spread to 210 countries and territories across the world.

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