Bangladesh has reached a grim milestone. Covid-19 has officially claimed 10,000 lives in the country despite the government’s hectic efforts to save both life and livelihood from the onslaught of the pandemic. The daily death toll from the viral disease has reached nearly 100, and on average over 5,000 people have been getting infected per day since last week. All hospitals have reached their capacity, and media reports galore that critical patients are being turned away due to lack of ICU beds.
Overall, the situation is alarming, but surprisingly people are still as careless as ever. Officially, the country is going through a ‘tough’ lockdown, but the people are seen coming out on the streets in large numbers on flimsy grounds. For instance, on Thursday police fined a person who went to Malibagh from Uttara which is about 20 km for buying catfish. Public transports are not plying, but private vehicles are clogging the roads. People are seen thronging kitchen markets in large numbers and crowding in front of the closed doors of mosques which were asked to arrange prayers with limited number of worshipers.Going by the look of things, who can tell that a tough lockdown is underway? Only a few seem to understand the gravity of the situation. Against this backdrop, it is indeed a herculean task for our law enforcement agencies to make such a large number of law-breakers to obey the restrictions and health guidelines. In many areas shoppers and pedestrians are seen playing cat and mouse with the members of law enforcement agencies.
This is very unfortunate and self-defeating, to say the least. Our safety is at our own hand. If we jeopardize our own life, none can save us. We must behave responsibly and follow government directives to keep us safe from the deadly virus.
That said, while people’s spontaneous participation is a must to contain the spread of Covid-19, the government and the local representatives have to meet people’s genuine needs so that they can stay at home. Carelessness will only invite more deaths.