Govt issues 18-pt directive to rein in corona wave

Staff Correspondent

31 March, 2021 12:00 AM printer

Amid a sharp rise in coronavirus infections following a steady downward trend for nearly three months, the government has issued an 18-point directive to chase away the virus.

The directives will remain in force for the next two weeks with an aim to contain the coronavirus transmission.

A gazette notification, signed by Prime Minister’s Principal Secretary Dr Ahmad Kaikaus, was issued on Monday in this regard.

Bangladesh on Monday reported 5,181 coronavirus infections, highest daily cases since the pandemic. Second highest 5,042 cases were recorded in the country on Tuesday.

The country registered previous highest 4,019 cases on July 2, 2020.

As per the directives, all kinds of public gatherings, including social, political and religious ones, have to be limited in all places and no gathering will be allowed in areas of higher coronavirus transmission.

Passengers coming from abroad have to remain in quarantine for 14 days in hotels at their own expenses.

Recommended health guidelines have to be followed at mosques and other places of worship while gatherings have to be limited in tourist attractions and entertainment spots, cinema and theatre halls. The arrangement of all kinds of fairs and exhibitions has to be discouraged.

The public transport cannot carry passengers more than 50 per cent of their capacity and they have to adhere to Covid-19 health protocols while the movement of inter-district buses has to be limited to areas with higher virus infections, said the directives.

If necessary, the transport movement has to be stopped to halt the spread of the deadly virus.

The other directives are as follows: Purchase and sale of daily essentials have to take place in open spaces, maintaining proper health rules. Health codes have to be maintained properly in pharmacies.

Health guidelines, including wearing masks, must be followed in healthcare service institutions while health instructions must be maintained by sellers and buyers at all shopping malls.

All educational institutions, including primary, secondary and higher secondary level ones, and universities, madrasas and coaching centres, will remain closed.

Venturing outside after 10pm without any emergency will have to be avoided and non-essential movements must be stopped. Legal action will be taken if masks are not worn and other health rules are violated while travelling.

Patients with Covid-19 symptoms have to stay in isolation. Persons in close contact with patients will have to be quarantined as well.

All government and private offices, establishments and factories should be managed by 50 per cent of the manpower except emergency services.

Pregnant and sick officials or those aged above 55 have to perform official duties staying at home.

Meetings, seminars, training and workshops must be arranged online.

Proper health codes must be ensured in any type of public examinations where physical presence is mandatory.

Hotels and restaurants can serve only up to 50 per cent of customers they can accommodate. It is compulsory to wear masks properly and ensure all necessary health rules at workplaces.

The directives that came into effect immediately will remain in force for two weeks until further instructions, the gazette notification reads.

All relevant ministries, departments, directorates and agencies will take necessary measures to implement the guidelines to rein in the spike in coronavirus cases, it said.